06 May, 2010


Had my first ‘bad day’ since leaving. Nothing happened, just one of those days that comes occasionally. I guess it was because I actually had 2 deadlines for reports I have to write. One is about the conference I attended and the other an update about CPH and HVP for an organization in the UK. I needed Bhola’s help on both as I wrote as much as I could on my own, but needed more information as I've only been here a month. Bhola had a family emergency -his half-brother’s mother-in-law died, so he was busy all day with that. At the time, I didn’t know about the death and with him not here, I couldn’t finish the reports. I guess it was the first time in a long time that I had stress in my life! Minor stress, but stress nonetheless. After realizing that I wouldn’t get the reports emailed in the evening, I was kind of pouting and when that happens, everything (and everyone) gets on my nerves!

I just wanted to curl up and have the day end, but since that couldn’t happen I struggled through it. I wandered into the kitchen in the afternoon and just sat among everyone preparing food for the evening meal. I watched some of the kids cutting heads of cabbage and while watching them struggle holding the cabbage while trying to cut it or trying to cut it in a bowl, I was slowly getting frustrated. We are all sitting on the floor also, as that’s where everything is done. I didn’t want to tell them ‘how to do it’ as who am I to dictate…but then finally one of the girls gave up and I saw this shining knife calling me; actually begging me to use it. I asked for the cutting board and was soon chopping away –that poor cabbage didn’t know what hit it! After Ruplal and I chopped up the remaining 5 heads, I felt a little better.

I then ventured out of the kitchen and up to my room. I studied a little Nepali. When I went back down into the yard, I saw Bhola there and he explained where he had been all day and that he was sorry he wasn't around to help me finish the reports. Adding guilt to my already depressed state was not going over well. He then told me he would have to go see the Maoists (I guess there are some in every town) and ask them if he could drive the 40km to his half-brother’s house to see their grieving family. I said in surprise “You mean you can’t even drive your own vehicle in the strike!” and he answered “yes, no one can even drive their own vehicles”. It then made sense to me when my friend Ashley, who’s in Kathmandu told me on the phone that the streets are empty, no cars in sight. I figured that there were just no busses or taxi’s running, but it appears that NOTHING is moving –except bicycles.

Sometimes it takes a ‘in your face’ awareness to bring me back to reality and truly see what’s around me. So I didn’t get my report finished today, big WAAA and I felt sorry for myself for most of the day, bigger WAAAAA. My ‘poor me’ attitude took a 360 turn right then and there and I finished the day thinking of those with much much bigger problems.

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