I am getting more and more adjusted to my life here. Liking it more and more. The people are wonderful, the colleagues almost treat me like family, and I really start feeling that I can be myself here! It's a strange, good, warm, wonderful feeling... :-) I think it also helped that I finally had my presentation this Monday. It went so well, and it was a good feeling to finally be able to get the students to know me a little bit more! I had been walking around as "someone" for three weeks. It's always good to know that you can turn into a someone somewhat more defined. :-) My presentation was actually a concert, sharing repertoire from different genres I have worked with, and also teaching them a couple of songs - that was FUN!! And I really felt appreciated! I will put out some videos and pictures very soon! :-D
Today we have a concert at an Italian restaurant in Lazimpat. A very exciting project with 16-17 great musicians and an artist. It's a bit of an avantgarde project, where the artist will be painting (in Jackson Pollock style!!) as the concert goes along. The music is beautiful, and I've even been allowed to dance! ;-) The artist wants to have me dancing close to the canvas - I have no idea how that will turn out, but hopefully it will be an inspiring experience!
I never lack of things to do here. Always a chance of having a concert someone, always someone that invites us to this and that. This Wednesday was Chhatra (I am not sure of the spelling), a one-day festival celebrating the god Ganesh (elephant god!),
and we were invited to the home of one of the musicians at our school. Great HOT Nepalese food (which I afterwards say is marvellous, and I really mean it, it's just that I'm almost DYING as I'm eating it!! I need litres of water!), some strange rice BEER, whisky and rum (which was the two types of drinks I read I should NOT drink here, but anyway, I survived - haha). And his great family, lots of friends, sitting on his rooftop terrace on mats, having the view of Pashupatinath and parts of Kathmandu. No electricity, candlelights, cosy, great atmosphere. During the day there were two wagons with Lord Ganesh in the one of them, which travelled around the city - everyone comes out with sweets and flowers to give to the god (actually a particular kind of sweet, that Ganesh prefers..:-)) to worship him. Behind the wagons were drummers and dancers, making the ceremony even more special! I even got a tika (red painting on the forehead)!
So the days go by, and there is always something to be amazed, excited and also sad about. It is great to see that I'm improving my knowledge about the language. I love that people are so friendly here. I am given so many opportunities to use myself to the maximum. I have fallen in love with Pashupati - the green, lovely area of our city. But - the pollution is there, it is terrible, and a motorbikeride around the town for 45 minutes makes you completely exhausted. The people lying on the stairs below Pashupati with lepra.. it breaks my heart to see how their bodies just falls apart - what to do? Who will I choose to give money this day? The stray dogs, making me want to start a home here! (I don't think I have time for that as well!). Yes, contrasts definitely, but there is also so much life spirit here, a lot of will, a lot of hospitality. I just can't avoid falling in love with Nepal :-)