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October 27, 2007

Dassain was fantastic. The entire holiday is at least a week but the best is the two main days of huge lunches and gaggles of family members visiting and tikka (red paste put on my forehead by my aamaa) and everyone gets little envelopes of cash–its the Nepali version of Christmas. That was also when I first heard about the fires in California. A family Uncle showed up and upon hearing that I was from California told me that OJ Simpson’s house had burned down. My family kindly turns the news to coverage of the fires every evening and UCSD and the La Jolla PD continue to send me bizarre text updates and news.

In other epic news the Constituent Elections have been postponed indefinitely..which is good for SIT students as we wont have to evacuate but a big of a mixed bag for Nepalis. One the one hand no one was registered and you can only vote in your home village AND few people had the time of inclination to go home and vote AND they couldn’t really organize because everything shuts down for Dassain AND the Maoists were still insisting that their Community Youth League should provide security for voters (bad scheme). On the downside Nepal has not had an elected government since the King dissolved the parliament in 2002. This means that no one has a mandate and nothing gets done. Every project that was underway be it urban beautification projects, government literacy programs etc had to cease and wont be able to restart until elections happen.

Tonight is our homestay family party. All the families and students are going out to a Chinese restaurant–it should be grand! The next two weeks are my final weeks of official classes so lots of Nepali language tests coming up. This coming friday we, Anil and the heads the East Asian UNICEF branches are going to Nagrakot for some exploring and chatting. Im very excited to meet the UNICEF country heads and interested to see what they add to class discourse.

I have decided to live with my Nepali family for the duration of the ISP Research Period (november and december). Not only is it the cheapest and tastiest option but my Nepali family is such a crucial part of my life here that I cant imagine being in Kathmandu without them. Plus my house has internet and the fantastic baby Anna and a prime location near a branch of my favorite restaurant…

One Comment leave one →
  1. Willow permalink
    October 31, 2007 6:33 am

    I hadn’t visited in a while and it is SO GREAT to hear your updates. I look forward to hearing more about politics when I see you–it sounds like you’ve learned so much there.

    Enjoy the delicious food, and make a post about your project sometime soon–how is it going? Or are you only really working on it en force once you’re done with classes?


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