Overloaded truck! This picture was taken this morning when we filled the truck with all the materials we bought for the villagers of Ratankot here in Nepal! You can here see all material that we have bought for all the contributed money. And this is only half of everything we bought! The arrangements for the rest of the shipments will be sent to Ratankot later on this week.
6:15 I woke up and made some freeze dried rice pudding with strawberries. I also drank coffee and cold juice! I bought the juice yesterday and I was able to put it in the monks’ refrigerator and the feeling of drinking cold juice was absolutely indescribable!
7:00 Now I’m waiting for Shyam. I wait for him a long time but I’m getting used to how everyone in Nepal has a different view of the time. While I wait I send a mail with an idea to Sophie, many other aid workers here asking which country Lööf Foundation comes from so I suggest to her that we should press the Swedish flag on our clothes!
8:45 Shyam and Karma finally pop up with the truck partially loaded. We begin to load all the material that we have kept in the monastery.
10:00 Now that we have loaded all the materials on the truck and set off for Ratankot. The truck gets very fully loaded! Me and Shyam- and Karma’s sister are traveling in a small Suzuki Swift. Shyam is going in the truck and Karma stayed in Kathmandu. Just before we set off, Prem (the third brother) came over and has managed to get hold of various prescription medications from the UN that we will leave to the doctor in the neighbouring village of Ratankot. There isn’t much traffic for the whole journey. 2 out of 3 stores in Kathmandu have closed down. It has been reported that 1.2 million people left the city, people are very scared. The tent camps we pass on the road just grows and grows.
13:00 Arriving at the place where we get dropped off to go to Ratankot. This time we cannot drive all the way because we do not have a four-wheel drive car. The ride has gone unusually fast today, just three hours despite the mass of rubble on the road. Usually it takes about 5 hours. The sister remains at the road with some friends. I begin the walk myself. Now I’ve done it so many times I can find it myself, its 33 degrees and bright sunshine. I meet a man on the way and he is carrying a heavy sack of wheat on his back. He explains that he left Dubai and came home to work in his village to support his family. He speaks good English and it feels nice to have a chat with someone along the way.
14:45 Arriving in the village, I stop at the waterfall and I wash myself. It feels like it is cooling my body as it was a very warm and sweaty walk. I also fill my filtered water bottle at the waterfall. My water purification system works just fine! The walk took 1 hour and 35 minutes with a 15 kg pack on my back and a climb of 700 m. Ratankot is located at an altitude of 1550 m, I am now able to see this clearly with my new app in my phone.
15:15 Arriving at the tent and I start to unpack. I realize that I have to move my tent for more of the water buffalo family are to move in. I get good help from the village youth, they help me move the tent and my belongings a terrace up, the same terrace as many other villagers live in.
16:00 Sophie calls and asks about how I am doing, it feels good to talk to her. She is always a bit worried when I travel on the Nepali roads.
17:20 The truck with all the materials arrives. Delayed by 2.5 hours due to technical problems on the road. When we were unloading it formed a bit of a crowd, everyone helped a lot so work is done very fast to unload. We put everything in a shed, we cannot distribute all of the materials as all the other stuff has to come. There are gifts that families should receive after they have to travel very far and they cannot go twice. Many live very high up and it’s not so easy to get around. The guys in the village were so excited about the footballs! There was a little girl holding a football and when there was an aftershock she hugs the football as if it were a teddy bear.
18:00 I go to the playground to watch the guys play football. I got tears in my eyes when I saw how much one football can do for these guys. They play in flip-flops and the field appears to be in quite a bad shape. They invite me to play and I was delighted to. Playing football at 1550 m altitude in 33 degrees of heat is pretty sweaty and tough but it’s so much fun! Imagine being able to experience all this and contribute so much and at the same time – get paid. It is so fantastic! Thanks Sophie and Torbjörn!
19:00 I cook dinner, it is starting to feel like home now! The darkness begins to fall. I start writing my daily diary and then I eat my dinner and drink some coffee. I even have the luxury of some chips that I brought with me from Kathmandu.
20:00 I have now finished the diary, now it is black outside and everyone is in their tents. Sophie and I talk on the phone and I talk about the day. It feels nice to share the day’s experiences. Hope you readers will continue to follow and appreciate our work within Nepal! Now its bedtime. Good night everyone!