Back to Nepal.
An earlier post told about our adventures to and life upon arrival in Kathmandu. After the movie (which we were too tired to finish watching) we snuggled deep under the layers of covers for a sound sleep, and we woke up ready to experience our first full day in Nepal.
First on our agenda (after coffee, of course) was the 30-minute walk from our host home to Anna’s flat. We looked forward to a nice hot shower (as opposed to a very cold bucket bath) and to see Kathmandu from Anna’s everyday perspective.
Depending on the wealth of those in any particular area, some streets were paved, some streets were simply rocks, and we might even describe some city streets as lanes. Though I watched cars slip by each other in the narrowest of situations, I’m still not sure how it was done! (And we’ve heard that there are many SUVs waiting for customs clearance. How will they ever maneuver these streets??)
Life pretty much takes place outside. Storefronts and homes are smack dab on the street. For most, meals and family life take place on the flat rooftops. The sun offers warmth and light…the temperatures by day are quite pleasant. (But once the sun falls behind the mountains it is downright chilly! Thankfully Anna had warned us to bring clothes that could be worn as layers…)
We stopped along the way to pick up some fresh fruit and vegetables.
Meals needed to be scheduled around the daily electricity outtages. Or load-shedding. Our hosts and Anna lived in separate grids in the city so when one home was without, the other was enjoying power. We tried to keep all of that in mind.
Speaking of electricity, how in the world would one even know where to begin to find a problem in all of these wires? Amazing that there’s any electricity at all! Or phone service. Or anything else that might be connected there!
Because we were there for the holidays, lots of groups and friends gathered periodically to celebrate. Food was always part of the fun. (Isn’t that the truth just about everywhere?) Anna’s friends span many cultures so we were introduced to a wide variety of taste treats.
After showers, Toma, Anna and I donned kurtas to attend a gathering of women celebrating Christmas. (Jim visited with the husband of one of Anna’s friends.) I loved watching Anna interact…seems she’s quite the dancer once you get her on her feet. Heh.
En route to one such party, still in Kathmandu, I was surprised to see what I would consider normal only in a village setting. Cows and other livestock living next to homes. In the city. Downtown.
And prayer flags waving everywhere. The understanding is that the wind blows the prayers to the correct god. Go figure. Of course, that can only take place AFTER you ring the bells in the morning to wake the gods up. I am so thankful that the God of the Bible never sleeps and is ALWAYS ready to listen to my prayer!
This was certainly proving to be an interesting country. And this was only Day 1!
(For additional photos, click here. I’ll be adding additional photos over the next few days.)