Sunday, 2 November 2008

The Orphanage

My arrival was greeted by 6 smiling and happy nepali children. I am sleeping on the ground floor next to the children .

I have a very large but sparten room to myself. Its a case of living out of the sausage bag on the floor with no wardrobe /storage space. I am still trying to get used to the cold and dark room at night. Just as well I brought a torch light with me to keep me company. My comfort blanket is reading the October edition of Women and Home magazine via the torch light. One night is about the recipes on coffee n walnut cake, another night is how to do a perfect roast duck. I really fantasized about what I'll be cooking and eating if I were to be in UK

The definition of an orphan here is somewhat different from the west (so I am told ). It not only means children without parents, but it includes also the very very poor families (who live in the remote mountainous part of Nepal) who just cannot afford to feed their children, as well as those with abusive /drunken /mentally ill parents, as well as those who have been imprisoned for whatever reason

I am having intensive lessons in Nepalise language and culture. Talk about grey cells being stretched. It is a very painful process . I have had couple bouts of cultural shocks, which I won't go into detail here . Suffice to say , I am surviving, at times almost enjoying it.I am having 3 vegetarian meals a day, trying to convince Uma (my host ) that I don't take breakfat normally (a lie) and that lunch for me in UK is usually consist of a couple slices of bread only. There is no need to go to all that trouble really. However, I do have a secret store of digestive biscuits and dark chocolate which I bought at the Abu Dhabi airport. They should last me for a bit

We went shopping this evening and spent eighty pounds on two months grocery for the orphanage. They include ninety kilos of rice. We are putting plans to have a small scale generator put in because of the daily powercut(usually 3-4 hours a time) Its going to increase to four hours twice a day soon. We are also going to buy a double bunkbeds because Uma is hoping to have two new children early next year They are the older sisters to two of the children here.We are going to buy winter clothing for the chlden tomorrow.They all look pretty tatty from what I can see The above will probably account for a large chunk of five hundred pounds. Hopefully the overall expense won't cost more than that

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