Light's out, you're in Nepal.
We arrived at the Schechen Guest House with our I-phones and I-pads and no electricity. There was a polite struggle between me, my son, and my....(what do you call the guy you're seeing when you're no longer a girl and he's really not a boy?)...friend, to push our plugs into the outlets without looking greedy during the few hours it was on. After the Maoists took over in Nepal in 2008, people thought the electricity situation would improve. But things got worse. Global Politician reported that:
Electricity has been playing a game of cat and mouse in Nepal . Out of the 24 hours, it is on only for 16 hours. Nepalese are forced to live without electricity for 8 hours, six days a week – 48 hours per week. Just imagine yourself living without electricity for such a long time in New York , Seoul , London and Sydney , and then realize how much the Nepalese are suffering. Is Nepal returning towards the Stone Age?
Well, this is Nepal, a nation with huge hydropower potentials (this is limited to the papers only), where the electricity supply has been overrun by simple of simplest demand of a meager 720MW peak load demand and this has led The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) to rationing power (load shedding) to its customers all over Nepal.
Never- ending Political uncertainties, terai unrest, acute fuel shortage, and now this mammoth electricity crisis has stolen smiles from the face of ordinary Nepalese, whose nation had started producing energy from water resources through Pharping hydro power plant much ahead than China. But look at Nepal today and look where China today is terms of energy security.
But it's not all about Ipads, Iphones, etc. There is still just...I.
There was nothing to do. But as my nine year old son often points out, there's no way to do nothing.
Nothing is something.
So I did nothing, something. It was relaxing. I fell to sleep.
At 4 a.m. the lights and fan turned on. I stumbled out of bed. Dogs barked. Monks began their prayers. I made a mental note that in the future when the electricity went off, I had to remember to turn off the lights.
This is third in a series of pictures and stories from a recent trip I took to Nepal with Kina Social Ventures. It's about girls. It's about beautiful, intelligent women with no opportunities. It's about pollution, monkeys, dogs, Buddhism, The Small World, cell phones, Maoists, loud speaker systems made out of Pringle containers, royalty murdered, goats grazing on marijuana plants, but more than anything else, this blog is about how desperately children in poor countries must struggle to get an education. It's about Kina's efforts to "empower girls to rise above". And its about Good Karma, which in this case, isn't what you think.