By Richa P
In less than one month, I, along with my family and few friends will be going to Nepal to celebrate my marriage to Chris (three years after we tied the knot). Back in 2012, I was set to marry him, again in Nepal, but my grandfather unexpectedly passed away so we had to cancel. In our culture after a close family member dies, one can’t participate in any religious ceremonies for a time period (this depends on your relationship to the deceased). Since my grandfather passed away, my parents and paternal relatives wouldn’t be able to participate in the wedding ceremony. Chris and I finally decided to throw our reception this year, we bought our tickets in late January.
With my luck, the earthquake happened in April and now the unrest that is stirring the country. On September 20th, after 8 years, Nepal finally has a constitution. While the constitution is not fair to women and other minorities, we have something, the political parties have agreed on SOMETHING. I do not have much in depth knowledge about it so I will not speak more on it. However, the constitution has caused major problems, many people have died in the last few weeks, and now essential supplies are not entering Nepal. Word on the street is that this unofficial blockade is being imposed by India because they do not agree with the new constitution. India is saying that they didn’t impose such a thing and it’s the deliver drivers who are afraid to cross the border because they fear their safety. Whatever the reason, we, the Nepali people are suffering.
Just yesterday, Nepal banned private vehicles from getting fuel. The fuel is being reserved for public transportation and essential vehicles. It has been reported that the country will run out of gas in a week. Not only that, a Chinese airlines has ceased all flights to Kathmandu for 2 weeks. This same airline is one that many of my friends from California are taking later this month. I hope they will be able to resume their flights. So far, the airline I am taking is still running.
As you can probably tell, I am currently feeling stressed and anxious. More than 15 of our friends from abroad are coming to enjoy our wedding reception + plus many of my family who live outside of Nepal. I am worried for their safety and well being. Heck! I am worried for myself. If you remember in my last post, I said that I had quit my job to spend time in Nepal to be with my family, but also help with the earthquake rebuilding. It was not a decision I made lightly. Now I am not sure what is going to happen. I know it is too early to tell how things will be in a month or two, but with the way things are going, it looks like the road to improvement is going to be slow. Some of my uncles have suggested that it may not be safe for me to volunteer. Right now, I have an open return date, I am not going to decide anything until I set foot in the country.
If you know me well, you know I am a person who gets anxious really easily. I suffer from anxiety. It’s hard for me to take risks when I can’t predict the outcome. What I am trying to say is that I am a very safe person, I make safe decisions. Will it be safe for me to volunteer and travel? I mean will I get to go anywhere if there is a fuel shortage? Will Nepal have fuel again? Will food and other supplies make it in before the start of Dashain? I have a lot of questions, many Nepali people do (both home and abroad).
I am trying to stay positive, I am trying to focus on the reunion with my family and friends. But it’s hard, I am not going to lie. I just feel for all of those who are suffering right now. I hope that the politicians are able to make some decisions that will lead us forward, that will lead us to prosperity and equality. The people of Nepal have already suffered enough this year, they should have the opportunity to enjoy this holiday season with a bit of joy and happiness.
*People on the ground, can you share your thoughts? What is your take? What do you think will happen to Nepal? Please share!