Random Journal Excerpts
Kathmandu Travel Blog› entry 33 of 49 › view all entries
June 23rd, 2006 – by: umbralwalker
Just some random excerpts from my journal:
Kathmandu Nepal epitomizes a polluted city. Dare to take a breath, and swallow a mouthful of deisel exhaust. Seek out that sacred river you heard about, the one that people from all over India take a pilgrimage to, yeah that one that has been established as a world heritage sight and feel the chills go up and down your spine as you watch the children swim naked in the stinky, smelly, foamy run off from the stinky, smelly, foamy streets of Kathmandu. Who knows what is thriving in that water- I just hope those kids have had their shots.
Look to the horizon for the snow-capped Himalayas and take in an eye full of hazy obscure outlines of what could be mountains- but who knows what really lays hidden behind the thick layer of brown smog.
There are no trashcans provided by the government- it is the custom to leave it to the lower castes, namely the dark-skinned "untouchables" to break their backs picking up itty bitty pieces of paper from the mud with their hands. One just finishes his or her cigarrette, candy wrapper, juice box or whatever and just tosses it right into the mud. I have seen several dark-skinned men doubled over, working away, pushing the mud around to retrieve trash that has been trampled deep into the ground.
The streets are full of racket. Traffic cops incessantly blow their useless whistles as the drivers ignore their flayling arms and swerve around them. Tuk tuk and bus drivers stop every 50 meters or so and yell out their windows a rythmic sing song announcement about their destinations.
Nepalis have quite the romance with their car horns... they lay on them all day, with no other appparent reason other than the fact that everybody else is leaning on their horns. As if your average car horn is not obnoxious enough, many have rigged the horns to trumpet off catchy little tunes PeeWee Herman would swoon over. I come back to the hotel every night with a sore jaw... the constant noise really makes me cringe!
Most Nepalis eat with their right hand, picking up the food and scooping it into their mouths with their fingers. They never eat with their left hands. Shall I explain why? In Nepal, you rarely encounter any toilet paper or the "bum gun" I had grown accustomed to using while in Thailand. The bum-gun you ask? Yes, its a spray gun provided next to the toilet. You don't have to touch anything- just spray from afar. Takes some getting used to, but can be quite refreshing. Hehe. In Nepal, you are only provided with a spicket or a jug of water next to the toilet. It is up to your left hand to do the job of washing your bum with the water provided. Hence the custom of eating with your right hand only.
I havent' done it yet, but I'm sure at some point I will find myself in a tight spot w/out toilet paper... and well... a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. It's amazing what you are capable of enduring when you are forced into a situation. Sharing my bungalow with the locals of Ko Tao, Thailand taught me that.
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