Here’s why folks mention the road first when asked about the helpful changes to Yaku. It was built 4 years ago.
Before that, everything in the village came like this:
Concrete for toilets and septic systems – not so easy. The tractor was headed to the construction of the new health post building . Concrete, with rebar.
The heaviest piece of the diesel mill, 1400 lbs, was carried 15 miles. Down 5000 ft & up 4000 ft.
Now, here are a few pictures of Yaku, the “town”, or “Bazar”, as they call it. (I think that’s a word we got from them, i.e. Hindi.) There’s not much, and that has happened only in the last couple years: two small stores and locals renting rooms to government workers (teachers mostly) whose homes are elsewhere. Before that, the health post and the school was about all. Oh yes. A significant “Police Station” was built to cope with the Maoist revolution, about a dozen men. And there’s a Mill that husks grain and presses mustard seed oil. Women used to spend a lot of time doing that. And carrying water. Black plastic pipe, that brings the water. That’s real liberation. It’s everywhere. Not charming, but now, the girls go to school.
The larger of the two stores:
I’m doing short posts. The connection is poor. Small successes. Add up.
I’m curious to know if these pictures catch a little of the magic. I keep pinching myself. How can this be real.
Here are a few pictures from a walk above Yaku. The light was good. The wide angle lens makes the hills look much smaller and less steep than they are. But, otherwise, pretty good.
High School Birthday Celebration – continued:
Of course there are speeches. This was honoring a school donor who is providing scholarships and one of the students he’s helping.
A couple days later I got to meet the man who started the school in 1947, a few months before I was born. On the right. He’s approaching 90. He was only around 20 at the time. He has been a mythical figure for me. In our conversation he insisted that he was just helping the village do what it wanted. Reminds me of the line from Lao Tse: When a leader follows the Tao , the people say, we did it ourselves.
The fellow on the left is the father of my friend Mohan, who installed the School’s first two computers and the solar panel to run them. You met Mohan smiling at the end of the short video – Pakribas Evening. His father also smiles a lot. Even for photographs, which is very unNepali.
I’ve been in Yaku nearly two weeks, very busy catching up with old friends, meeting new teachers, talking with the Doctor at the health post, the police about the Maoists and the elections, the miller about business, passers by about where they are going, and, walking the hills. The hills are bigger than most of our mountains and they have a presence you feel in your bones. The vistas are, you know, awesome. That people live here …. Wow. Photos don’t work, of course. Nor words. Videos do a little better. This is the first of a series of posts from Yaku.
When I arrived, the village was celebrating the school’s birthday. Two days of celebration. Dancing is a big part of any celebration.
Dancing in Yaku
Here’s Nepali dancing in Seattle at last year’s Deshain celebration, I think, put on by the Nepal Seattle Society. There are more than 10,000 Nepalis in Seattle. I stuck this in to show that Nepalis take their culture with them. And it’s good dancing. With a bonus at the end.
Dancing in Seattle – 2 min
“wordpress” is a “programming environment” and my posts have been unpredictable. I’m at the beginning of the learning curve. I’m posting little segments to identify glitches. Intermittent & slow internet also teaches, …. I just keep in mind the truth of HAL’s observation “It’s always human error, Dave.”
If you are new to this blog, read the “about” page.
This 30 second video captures a bit of the feeling of an evening with the family. I love it when I’ve been around long enough that I’m no long the center of attention. Just hanging out enjoying the conversation and the feeling. I’m discovering a wonderful benefit of my mindfulness practice that when I stop trying to understand the conversation and just enjoy hearing the sounds of the voices, gestures, expressions, … I understand much more. It’s a delight to notice the sound and the understanding – marveling that they both just “are”. And it does seem miraculous. No understanding or even awareness of the connection. Just is. Wow.
Click the link below the picture
Evening in Pakribas