Saturday, 30 August 2014

Project 365 - Day 121 : That Friday Feeling!

Heights of Laziness - Ironing my shirt.
Welcome to the Lex Bar!

DAY 121 : That Friday Feeling!

Date: 29/08/2014

I was whatsaspping my sisters back in the UK and telling them “sometimes I have no idea what I am doing in Nepal”. Take it lightly. I am pretty used to things here but you know, not having water at the right time (because of power) and brushing in the morning with bottled water (not mineral water) is still a bit meh. Washing clothes is the biggest struggle for me. I sit there in the terrace and wash my clothes, get tired and wonder what my life has come to. Lol. I need to go find an affordable place to wash my clothes. I realized that sitting on the terrace and washing clothes is not my thing. Washing dishes is so much more fun. Baru I’ll save my coffee/taxi/eating out money and spend it to wash clothes.

This morning, the interns – Astha, Namita and I met around 11.40AM and went to Sagun Griha in Tripureshwore. I hope that’s the place… well it’s just a five minute walk from the World Trade Centre. Sagun Griha ma chahi ke bhane, they basically sell Made in Nepal products that range from natural soap, spices, Nepali craft materials, notebooks/diaries made from natural lokta paper and more. Quite a few of the products are there because of the skill and training provided by MEDEP to the budding micro-entrepreneurs. I was going to say the Nepali name but I forgot.

After we wrapped up the photo + interview at Sagun Griha, we headed off to Patan specifically because we wanted to go and eat at the ALMAYA FRIED HOUSE. We had no idea where ALMAYA was located but after a few phone calls and asking our way around, we got to the fried house aka the fake KFC which is better and cheaper than KFC. It’s actually really good! We had the whole chicken spicy (kinda works out like a bucket) and few drinks and that was under Nrs 1000. Bargain!! Will deffo be going back. Patan Durbar Square is a pretty cool area!
I wanted to watch UTSAV in the cinemas so I asked Astha to drop me off at City Centre. I did ask Astha and Namita to join me for the film but they were hesitant to watch a Nepali film. I will drag them with me to watch Nepali films in the days to come. Selina and Suprina, both from the UK were interested to watch the film – relief – so we watched UTSAV together. Honestly, it was a thoroughly entertaining film. It has plenty of things going on and really manages to stir up your emotions too. Who is Sanjog Koirala, don’t know if I’ve seen him in the media before but he has done a great job. Menuka Pradhan is just on a whole another level.

The bainis and I went to Mezze for dinner. Sakil joined towards the end and then we headed over to Thamel whilst the bainis headed home.

Sometimes I feel like my time here in Nepal is all a big dream and I’ll wake up one morning to find myself in my bedroom back in Sutton. I confused Sakil when I said, I miss the moment right now. I tend to feel that way because I know whatever I experience right now is already in the past. Does that make sense? And half of the time my mind is already in the future and I’m planning things to do in the UK when I get back, my trip to Vegas and LA (been planning for a while so I hope it really works out) so I kind of already miss Nepal, even though I am in Nepal. Anyways bit of a #mindfuck so Im heading out. 

Project 365 - Day 120 : TEEJ Day!

My beloved No. 5
City sights

DAY 120 : TEEJ Day!

Date: 28/08/2014

So today is TEEJ here! What’s more important is that I am at work today and the women in the office have a day off. That’s so unfair. I don’t quite understand this “positive discrimination”. Fair enough I might not be celebrating the event but if some people are to receive a day off then so should everyone. It’s a bit #WTF Anyways I still had a good day so lol I’m cool, just had to point it out.

After work I set off for Thamel to meet Bivit and Selina. We had some files to transfer on my laptop, videos from Tracing Nepal basically. We met up at BK Fries, quite a popular spot! We were also joined by Selina’s sister Suprina. After that Bivit and I walked up to Lazimpat from where I got a tempo home.

Ghar ma aaye, khayee ra etikai basirakheko ho. This NTC ADSL internet is so – hot and cold – kahile kahi, it’s flawless and kahile kahi there’s nothing but flaws! That’s one of the reasons why I don’t blog as much. I sit there waiting for the internet to work and next thing you know, it’s a new morning and I wake up thinking “fuck”.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Project 365 - Day 119 : Love Hate Relationship

Astha on the go!
Me on the go!

DAY 119 : Love Hate Relationship

Date: 27/08/2014

I don’t mind travelling on a tempo but micro is just so annoying! Especially when the conductor wants three people to sit on the seat made for two. I am fine with most things here but the public transportation just sucks man. It super sucks! Wish somebody could bring a “revolution” in that department too. Ugh. Anyways’ I always tell myself “Save money Lex, don’t go on taxis, don’t do it” and next thing you know, I get on a taxi and pay something very silly. Joy. I quickly convert the amount to pounds to make myself feel better hahahaha! But when I know that it would’ve only cost Nrs 20 by micro/tempo then I’m back to “why the fuck did I get on the taxi” mode. Everyday battles with myself. Fun. Not.

I also dislike it when the taxi drivers ask me “kata, chowk mai ho”… it’s like – of course not, if I want to be dropped off on the main road then I would’ve simply taken a bus/micro/tempo! And I don’t think the taxi drivers realize that we are paying for their service… it’s like they always want to drop you off where it’s convenient to them. “Yahi drop garchu ni, tyaha gayo bhane one-way cha”. It’s like. Ani ma ke garnu?. I got a bit annoyed and told the taxi driver that if he doesn’t want to drop people where it’s convenient to them then maybe he should just drive a micro instead. I know it sounds very mean but it’s the truth!

Regardless of all this – I am grateful that we have taxis and good taxi drivers too because at the end of the night, that’s the only option I have when returning home.

Work was fine… reading, planning and re-sharing stories! Astha and me fancied pizza for lunch so we headed out to Roadhouse. It was so good! The last time I had Roadhouse Pizza was probably back in 2009 hmm! 

I headed off to meet PS at the usual spot. I had to wait a while so that was a bit, uhum! We were joined by Selina and then Sakil. Selina headed off to Shisha to meet some TN members while we went to the Chinese place to have some dinner. The Chinese place reminds me of that WONG-KEI bhanne eatery in China Town London so much! It’s small and quite busy - you’ll probably have to share the table with somebody else. We ate for three and the bill was only Nrs 800 something and it was so good! Such a bargain no?

After dinner, I dropped by to say Hello to the TN members at Shisha and we called it a night.


Project 365 - Day 118 : Always Have a Plan

Okay this is the only photo I have from today.

DAY 118 : Always Have a Plan

Date: 26/08/2014

Just another cas-day (casual day) at work! Oh and there’s a new intern here called Astha. It’s nice to have another bundle of fresh energy. We left work a little early today and I headed off to my usual spot in DM mainly to download Microsoft Office. After a day and few hours, I managed to reinstall MS Office! SUCCESS! Now I can continue writing the daily blog-posts here on

After that I met up with Suraj and we headed over to Cafereena for some food. The momo platter that they have there is pretty good! I think I must’ve been quite hungry too! We talked for ages, the usual; life, work, people, future and more. When the time came, I got on a cab and headed home.

I arrived in Nepal on May 1st and it’s August 26th today, it has been four months since I got here and looking back, I’ve worked with a Nepali organisation, completed Tracing Nepal and currently doing an internship with UNDP/MEDEP and also managed to squeeze in a few visits to Chitwan and also meet my relatives in Taplejung too. My time here has been productive so far and I hope to continue at this pace.

The internship here will probably come to an end around October end. Before that I will probably start working somewhere else, out of office hours and before this year ends I plan to join my cousin Lax and Lungma on a trip to somewhere super exciting! I don’t want to reveal the destination because – what if it doesn’t happen haha! And it’s quite a common destination so, no big deal as well. I believe I will stick to my 365 days here and probably make my way back to the UK around May 2015.

I have seen opportunities here but before I rush into it and do something I would like to go back to the UK and work for few years, gain more experience and save money before I come back to Nepal and completely throw myself into building something here. Hmm. Lots of thinking, planning and researching to do! I do want to be based in Nepal but I don’t want to struggle to survive. I want to make a living, work and be able to go on holidays, have the social life and also be able to continue working closely with different organisations and local communities. Starting up my own business is the goal for now… I don’t quite see it possible to work in other places/for someone and actually lead a comfortable life here. That’s my thought hai. I am sure there are many doing their own different things and leading a comfy life and well done to you for that.

Herum ke huncha… my life is so super planned. I was telling my TN team member that I’ve planned my holidays up until 2019. I’ve also wrote down how old I will be then and how much time I should take off and what I hope to be doing by that time in my life. To some, this might come across overwhelming but I’ve always planned and stuck by it. And my plan more or less has always worked out. The plan to come to Nepal for one year was penned down back in 2010 and here I am.


Project 365 - Day 117 : Reflecting!

DAY 117 : Reflecting!

Date: 25/08/2014

Back to work!

I’ve been looking forward to having a routine life again, you know, the Monday – Friday thing. Gives me at least some sort of structure. The work day went fine. I met up with Bijay afterwards for coffee and light food. We went to Falchha in Basantapur, it was pretty nice.

Thinking about Tracing Nepal, I am so relieved that we completed the sixteen day experience without a glitch. On August 2nd when we had the meet and greet in Thamel we came to learn about the Sunkoshi landslide. After that, things started really going pear shaped. More rain, more landslides, bridges becoming out of bounds and the purwanchal bandh was all there. Of course, it’s monsoon – I knew I had to prepare for this. But I was pretty confused as to what we could possibly do if the purwanchal bandha hadn’t been lifted. There were scores of people dying, vehicles blocking the highways and The Last Resort plan pretty much went straight outta the window too! Looking back now, I am surprised that we actually did what we set out to do and experienced everything midst all the uncertainties – from bato bigreko, landslides, following the itinerary and don’t forget the walking continuously in the rain to reach my gau.

I do miss the team, they were all so amusing! Their funny one-liners and comments. I heard that Soniya found the uphill walk to Sablakhu quite a challenge and said something along the lines of “yo Lex Limbu le hamilai kun chai gau lagnu atyo” with Chhimmi topping it off with “Lex ko family Darjeeling jadai thiyo hola tara thakera yo gau ma baseko basekai bhayo hola”. Rofl.

That feeling was amazing – to know that I just brought these 10 individuals who would probably never go to Sablakhu and they got to have a glimpse of the village. I am sure it’s a “first and last” visit but I told them I’ll build a nice big fort-like house one day with its own pool and all and bring them for a nice weekend stay. Hahaha! So maybe the pool might not happen but we do hope to build a nice house there. Maybe you, reading at home right now can visit one day too’

Anyways’ I’ve been feeling tired lately… heard one of our team members down with juga! I am having my juga ko dabai right now. Gonna call it a night now.


Project 365 - Day 116 : Busy Sunday

The manpower!
Ek Chin with PS.
With SC at the bhanchaghar
With Anjali Lama
Saying Bye to Jensun
Doing the Ice Bucket Challenge, Irish Pub.

DAY 116 : Busy Sunday

Date: 24/08/2014

I am glad that the shoot didn’t go ahead to day as I was all over the place. I started off by meeting the Tracing Nepal team near the airport for lunch as we had planned to bid farewell to Jensun who flew back to USA today. Unfortunately I could only be there for a short while as I had to head over to two different places to pick something up. Now I have been told that when I write “to pick something up” it comes across a little shady. No funky business y’all. Hahah!

After that I headed out to Bansbari to meet my cousin at the manpower agency. He’s flying to the Middle East tomorrow for employment and only receiving his passport and papers today.

Once that was done I made my way to Irish Pub in Lazimpat. I had told SC to prepare ice and water for the ice bucket challenge. Now in the video, it may not look like there’s ice in the bucket but there was! Honest! Otherwise I would’ve done a water bucket thing at Park Village yesterday. We finished the ice-bucket challenge video within few minutes, I got changed and ready to meet Pemba! We’ve known each other online for many years now and though there wasn’t any specific reason behind the meet today, I just wanted to meet the person in reality instead of just you know, virtually. I wanted to match profile with a real personality.
PS was nearby and I quickly met him around the premises of Irish Pub.

Once Pemba headed out, Anjali Lama came over. I’ve met Anjali before but we’ve never really sat down and talked. To be honest I don’t really sit down and talk with many people. I don’t think I’m good at that. Anyways, we talked about her upcoming documentary and various other stuff.

SC and I headed out and before he dropped me off home we stopped by the Thakali Bhancha Ghar in Bansbari for some quick bites! I tried chhurpi chilly for the first time. It had such a weird taste. Hmm. I don’t think I’ll be jumping on that bandwagon straight-away.

Productive day! Wahay!

Project 365 - Day 115 : Swim Day at Park Village Resort

My bojus got too much swag!

DAY 115 : Swim Day at Park Village Resort

Date: 23/08/2014

I said Bye to the team and made my way out of the guest house in the morning. One thing I remember from this morning is having the strawberry milk from DDC near Lainchour! It was the perfect way to start off the morning. Before you assume, no I don’t have hangovers.
I headed home on a tempo where I freshened up and then went out to get a haircut from the local hajam (barber). Only 80 rupees! Such a bargain haha! After I showered and all, I waited for Sakil and then we headed to Park Village Resort. I wanted to do nothing today… just relax. Not even talk. I am tired of talking and “hanging out”. Bivit came over as we had planned to do the ice bucket challenge there. When I called the Park Village restaurant, the gent whom I spoke to - confidently guaranteed that there would be plenty of ice and when I got there and asked, he’s like No. I also asked around for a bucket and apparently the whole resort does not have a bucket. Lol. I was off it. Screw it.

We swam for a bit and I also met my cousin from the UK. There was no point spending more money at Park Village so we headed to Bhat-Bhateni to eat momos at House of Momos! Only Nrs 100 per plate! Always go for the affordable and good stuff! Yo expensive thau ma alik swang matra besi – khana bhane just average huncha bhaneko. Heri heri nai cha hai tara. We had two plates of momo each. It’s “dyam good, like dyam ki dyam” hahaha! After that we went to Kaldi for some refreshments. We bumped into Nepali actor Gaurav Pahari – he was in Manjari bhanne film. I got a photo with him. Why not eh!

We split directions and headed our own way.

I am supposed to be having a photo-shoot tomorrow but till now I have no idea regarding the time, wardrobe arrangements and the idea behind the shoot so I called it off. I was looking forward to it and had given them my dates a month back – oh well. Maybe we’ll do it again someday. I just don’t want to do something where I have no idea what I’ll be doing lol. Can’t be looking like one of those CyberSansar modaals you know.