Saturday, June 27, 2009

I went to the year 2066, not much has changed but they live underwater

This blog goes out to my gal pal Cassi. She is out in the Pennsylvanian woods teaching young impressionable minds how to make rad books and how to transform large t-shirts into funky tops. She claims to always say 'we live in the future.' Her phrase continued to come to me as i would ask other nepalis when such and such happened and they would say 2064, or 2060. Currently, in the nepali calendar it is 2066 and i am becoming increasingly more convinced that we live in the future.

I just spent 4 days with youth leaders from around Nepal. These are leaders that work with technology centers, trying to help the community through technology. Youth is a very loose term and basically means anyone still relying on their parents so some of the youth were 28 and one was even 45. We had a good time talking about social capital and teaching others about facebook, blogs and wikis. I think even I don't realize how much technology impacts my life.

shout out to anyone who knows the origin of my blogpost title

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mero naam

These kids are sooo cute. They stole the welcome tikka and put it on themselves!

So I received a Nepali name a couple of weeks ago and it is my favorite trick. I guess people don't expect me to know Nepali and I know close to nothing, but i can say my name is Fulmaya (love flower) and I am from Gorkha.
I know some people are wondering what I am doing in Nepal because before i had no answer and right now I am not ready to answer. It has been hard to be alone but I am growing and as my parents told me when I was younger, it is character building experience.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Nepali Swagat

In Gokha, I have been going to small villages a couple of hours away on foot. It is exciting to be trekking along the Himalayas with other Nepalis and talking about traditions. And I can’t help comparing all my experiences here with India. And in this time India is a sweet memory.

My purpose in these villages is still somewhat puzzling, but learning more about development than I could in a classroom. Twice I have been welcomed in to the village with a traditional Nepalese welcome, which includes flowers and pink powder that is smeared on my face by the women.

Today, I got attacked by a beggar. She urgently wanted money from only one person in the crowd and that lucky person was me. When at first I didn’t give way she began to push and punch and moan. I shielded myself with a group of people but she was determined. I then went inside a bus and sat down and she stretched herself across two people to jab me in the arm, several times. But before I was sad that I couldn’t give her money and then I became just as stubborn as she. My friends mother gave me two rupees to give to her, but she threw it back at me. She then changed gears and walked around the bus. She found herself a rock and threw it inside the bus through the open window. She was trying to kill me! Even when the window was closed she still continued to throw the rocks. And even when the bus began to drive away she chased after it!

picture next time?

I missed call you

There is a phenomenon among the people here that has to do with cell phones. I don’t doubt that some of you are familiar with this phenomenon. It is the missed call. Here in south east asia, most phones are pay-as-you-go. So when a young person’s balance is low, instead of calling their friend, they call let it ring one time and then hang up. They tell me that the friend is supposed to call back and they can chat, because it doesn’t cost any to receive a call. But most likely the friend also has a low balance. So they just miss call each other all day long. I ask them why they don’t just message each other, thinking that is what young people do so avidly in the United States but that also requires balance. So if you get a missed call from me, I was thinking about you…

The youth center here holding a program for high school students to come and compete. Luxmi was explaining this to me, saying it was a chase program. I asked her what chase was. She was so shocked and tried to explain to me that it was a computer game and you competed, but that was as far as her limited English would let her go. The next day in the office I inquired further to the nature of chase. The next clue I got was that there was elephants, and a prime minister and a princess. Mario? What the heck? So finally Pren took me upstairs to show me the game on the computer. Can you guess what common household game this was? Chess.