Monday, July 20, 2009

Life on the big screens

Sometimes you have experiences that let you know your alive. Earlier this week I starred in a Nepali commercial for tire sealant. I wore more make up than I have ever worn in my life and I learned how to ride a scooter. I tossed my hair, looked into the camera and sang (yes, it was a jingle) "you'll never stop." They needed a white face to endorse their American product and i was more than happy to play the part.

Courtney has joined me in Nepal for my last week. It has been good to have her here and see her experience Nepal for the first time. I almost remember what it was like for me. I remember the time I saw what was to be my bathroom and how I went up to my room and cried because the the spider webs above the toilet and the stagnant water looked insurmountable. Oh to be naive and full of fear.

For the past few days Courtney, Jeff and I went to the National Park in the sourthen part of Nepal. We spent two days river rafting, riding elephants, canoeing and playing cards. I saw rhinos, wild elephants, friendly wild boars (bill the boar jumped in the river to follow us, he loved us so much), bambi and friends, and peacocks. My favorite part was the part I got to bathe with the elephants. If the Nepali people wanted me to be in another commericial where bathing with elephants were envolved, like you know for elephant soap, I would.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

I'm gonna free fall, out into nothin

So I jumped off a bridge. The man said come here and then put a harness on me. Then he was like, 'oh yeah, just go under rope.' before I know it, i am on the edge of a platform that is is 160m (roughly 524 ft) above a rushing river. Then he said, 'ok, your going jump one. two. three.' And then i did, just because he counted. Well I feel for 7 seconds and then the rope swung me. You see, it is the world's highest canyon swing. so it much like bungy jumping but different.
After this small conquering of fears, i went repelling down waterfalls in the middle of Himalayas!

Then when I was back in Kathmandu I rocked the local karaoke night at the local bar with some "Ironic" by Alanis. That was probably one of the best days in Nepal. Also, a mysterious stranger bought me a drink (a mocktail) because of my amazing karaoke skills and that has never happened to me. You see, we don't have very many bars in Provo, so mysterious strangers haven't had much of a chance. And let me tell you one other thing, I love karaoke. It may be up there with my passion for baby goats.

I leave Nepal in just over one week and I have a twelve hour layover in Tokyo during the middle of days. I open for any and all recommendations for how to spend those twelve hours, even if you are the mysterious stranger that reads my blog in India (i love google analytics).

Monday, July 13, 2009

Food for thought

Today I had some masala dosai with chutney. It made my heart warm to think of south india and to be able to eat the food! I submit that there is no better food in the world than south Indian food. Even Nepali dal bhat does not rival. I sat across the table from a korean girl that had just come to Nepal a few days ago from India which she says was hot. She has done a fair amount of traveling. She has definately out traveled me in terms of the number of countries. I talked about India with such excitement she asked me I loved it so much. And here is my travel advice that isn't worth much. Most peolpe can come to Nepal for a week and have a splendid time. Nepal and India can decieve you, and you may think the two must be very similar. If you go to India for a week you will hate it. There is so much about India and one needs to explore and discover. I know no other land and people like it. I may not be a good judge because I have only been to 17 countries out of 270 countries.

But India isn't calling be just yet, but the memory of it gets sweeter and sweeter with distance.

I already miss these friends and they are only four hours away!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Baby Goats In Nepal

There are two very important things that I must mention:

1. Mariah Carey's "always be my baby" should never be remade or performed as a cover. Not only can you not compete but the only reason that song is good is because Mariah sings it.

2. Baby goats are adorable. In many instances they seem more cute than human babies.

I have been in Nepal for less than two months. I have been working with two different organizations. For one, I am assisting in their efforts to strength these youth telecenters. These are basically techonology centers that are run by youth but also serve a purpose in helping their community. Some are called Youth Managed Resource Center (YMRC). I just got back from going to two rural villages set outside of Gorkha. I hiked to these villages with three other friends, one being my translator and the other two representing Gorkha's YMRC. The hike was only four hours and I have heard of others that have to hike for two days, but I was always asking myself why anyone would live this far away. For the highschoolers to go to school they have to walk up a mountain both ways. Did you know that 85% of Nepal lives in the rural area of Nepal? So the hiking was a little difficult for me. I will admit that the last time I went hiking was the summer of 07. But I was wearing my chaco, shoes especially designed for exactly what I was doing. And here my Nepali friend were wearing cheap flip flops. On the way to Maskichap I feel four times! They just told me it was not my habit to walk in such a way. But even the last time i went hiking in 07 i fell all the time, and so I tried to convince them that it was just because of me that i kept falling not because i was American but that seemed too hard to believe.

For some reason it is always a big hit when I start to dance. Here is me dancing at a wedding that was just down the street. Yikes!