It’s been some time since I updated my blog, I guess I got too busy enjoying myself that I really didn’t want to spend my time on the computer.
Since I have last posted, I have finished my project working at the orphanage in southern Nepal, spent some time in Pokhara, just under the Annapurna range, and returned back to Kathmandu to send off my wonderful travel buddy as she carries on in her adventures across Asia, and I went back to work on two new projects.
While I miss the kids at the Orphanage in Rampur, Chitwan very much, I am intensely happy to have left the heat behind. The heat my last two weeks there was boosting up to 125 degrees Fahrenheit (52 c). With power for around 8 hours a day, on a good day, and being surrounded by 4 inches of standing water in the rice paddies around the village, the heat was becoming unbearable.
When our projects wrapped up in Chitwan, myself and Jillian, my fantastic Australian travel partner moved on to Pokhara, where the temperature dropped a solid 40 degrees from Chitwan. Our first night in Pokhara, I discovered my home away from home. Located in Lakeside Pokhara, just a three minute walk from the hotel we were staying at is the Old Blues Bar.
From singing the blues, to hulahooping at the bar, making friends, and cooking for friends, I haven’t felt so much at home in Nepal as I did in Pokhara at the Old Blues bar. The people who run the bar are amazing. On a first glance they appear to be typical bar folk, drinking, playing music, relaxing, but upon getting to know who they are underneath it, it was really unbelievable. Some of them teachers, drug rehab counsellors, and women’s rights workers. They took Jillian and me on amazing adventures on their motorcycles to beautiful lakes, and spent so much time with us teaching about who they are, their home, and playing music.
All good times come to an end though, and Jillian and I had to return to Kathmandu. I stayed for a night in the center of the city with Jillian before seeing her off as she headed to Thailand, and I traveled back to our hostel in Kalanki to move to my new host family and projects.
I am living with a small family in their apartment near the bottom of the Swayambhunath Stupa, also known as the Monkey Temple. I am working for part of the day teaching English to ten young Buddhist monks, from 5 to 12 years old. In the afternoons I work at a school teaching conversational English in a much more hectic environment. I have a class of around 50 kids from 6 to 14 years old. For my first couple of days it was a really intense challenge for me, I was not given any direction as to what kind of curriculum the school wanted the children to learn, or any reference point as to what the kids knew to start. Beyond the limitations in preparation for the project that I had, I was faced with a class of 50 loud kids against myself, with a quiet voice and very little teaching experience.
A few stressful days at the school had left me feeling down, and lonely since my friends who I have been traveling with and working with up until this point have all left the country, but I had a great breakthrough the other day and I am feeling much more faithful that I can have an impact on the kids and make a difference.
I am happy to have had the turn around that came together this week, and I am looking forward to continuing my project for the next few weeks before I leave Nepal.