Monday, April 10, 2006

Wish for Peace

Greetings everyone,
Not sure if it has been in the news there, but there has been unrest here in the capital city of Kathmandu and other areas of Nepal as a result of the general strike imposed by the pro-democracy Seven Party Alliance and the Maoists, and in addition to the day-time curfews imposed by the King's autocratic government. Many people have been defying the curfews with pro-democracy rallies and protests. There have been some fatalities, although even one fatality is too much. These events have really made life difficult for the average citizen as many are unable to leave their homes to go to work (if they are not working, they are not paid), to buy food, to go to school, etc... Doug and I (foreigners in general) are safe and staying put in the tourist district of Thamel. We were supposed to fly out to Pokhara tomorrow where we were to launch our trek of the Annapurnas, but instead will probably fly to the Everest region as Pokhara is experiencing much unrest. The Everest region is not affected by the insurgency at this point, and being that there are no roads in the area, it is not affected by the strike. Our plan at this moment is to take the safest option - that being trekking in the Everest region, unless the strike is miraculously called off in the morning, a highly unlikely event.

On a more pleasant note, we were able to leave the tourist district early this morning to visit Swayambunath, which is one of the most revered religious sites in Kathmandu. We had a few hours before the curfew was imposed and it was nice to be out in a peaceful area, near a beautiful forest, just chilling out. We shared a donut that puts Krispy Kremes to shame and fortunately, the donut was eaten before it could be snatched by one of the temples many monkeys. Doug lit some butter lamps and with that he was able to make one wish - a wish for a peaceful resolution to the current situation here. Let's hope his wish comes true.

Peace and Namaste,
Jackie and Doug

3 comments:

Pam said...

Jackie, So glad both you and Doug are safe. Take care, have fun, we miss you.

Anonymous said...

Be careful you guys. -GV

Armen said...

Hey Guys,
Greetings from Tucson! We've been following your blog from the beginning. The recent unrest sounds intriguing--many detailed reports have been filed on nytimes.com. But you're rather smart to keep a safe distance.
Looking forward to seeing your pictures. Wishing you much wonder and adventure for the rest of your travels!

hugs from Armen and Debbie

P.S. Always remember: The dog woman don't, but the kat man do!