Nepal Diaries #7

Flew back yesterday from Kathmandu. The trip was too short and I did too little. On the flight back, my co passengers discussed where they were, when the big afternoon tremor shook the daylights out of us. One of my co passengers, a lady from Chhattisgarh, was trying to get to Barpak to hand out relief. She returned to Kathmandu, the same day and preponed her flight to Delhi. “I am a mother after all,” she tried to explain to me. No justifications were required. If I had made any babies, maybe the choices I make would have been diffrent. Whose to say?

Another passenger, was returning from Pokhra, when his ‘vehicle shook’, he said gesturing his hands from one side to another. Everyone, was quite shook up. But the strange thing is, that yesterday morning when I hailed a cab and went around Kathmandu taking pictures of the various houses that had come down, the bystanders seemed calmer than the tourists. For us it was an unusual occurence. For them, it’s something that they are slowing resigning themselves to. Read an article on, which stated that the worse is yet to come and an earthquake 32 times worse, is likely to hit the region..

I returned home, to a very upset family. My choices have always bothered them but this was legitimate… I would have hated to be in their shoes, too. But they’ve come to a point where they know asking me to not to do something is futile. So my Mom very sweetly just looked past me, turned to my Dad and asked, ”Why did we produce her?” and my Dad shook his head and replied,”Now, I can’t do anything about it.”

Nepal Diaries-#4

It’s my last night in Kathmandu. Have a two pm flight tomorrow. Wish I could stay longer. Wonder how much I’ll get done before that. Thank God there aren’t as many casualties as the last Quake. Though, people are terribly frightened.

Will never be able to forget the few hours of sitting on the ground feeling the tremors…people running-helter, skelter; the cries of frightened women and children.

I feel like God’s special child, tonight. People just go out of their way to ensure my safety. Today, people took me under their wing when they realized I was alone. They were as worried about my safety as they were of their own. Blessed to be here…blessed to have this life.

Day 5- Earthquake Diary

I  couldn’t drag myself out of bed this morning. The excess luggage has screwed my back. Somehow, managed to leave for Tudi Hill by late morning and what a trip it was. At around 12.50, as I packed up my cameras and was making my way towards the exit, I suddenly felt the tremors and then there was just utter chaos.

Nepal Diaries-#3

Men everywhere seem to be the same. My cabbie, is very upset that I ‘m alone in Kathmandu. “Koi  koi boyfriend nahin, koi husband nahin! Next time akele nahin aana.” But he says, “jab tak shaadi nahin karega, tub tak khosh he. Uske Ke baad nahin.”

Half the drive  is spent listening to him go on about me being a ‘danger lady’ and the other about how this relief never really reaches the people who most need it. 

He’s right! It doesn’t because all the distribution channels shut down. We return to a rainy night in Kathmandu. Tired and confused about what the purpose of anything is. Grateful for all the things we have.