5:10 I wake up while people start making breakfast and talking to each other. It’s all beginning to get light outside. I fall asleep again for some time.
5:45 I wake up again, I slept really well last night, I only woke up once during the night from an aftershock, it felt like it was pretty much but it wasn’t so sharp. Last night was a little cooler in the night because it was raining so I could crawl into my sleeping bag and it was a very nice feeling.
6:00 I fix breakfast, the sun shines today too! Shyam comes by with two eggs for me that I’m saving for lunch. For breakfast there will be oatmeal with cinnamon, as well as having coffee and dehydration supplements to drink.
7:00 Shyam and I start our hike down the valley to visit the last three Home of Hope children.
8:20 We find Home of Hope child number 12, Rakesh Rauth. He is just coming out with the family’s goats, but we manage to stop him. His shed is as miserably as everyone else. He lives with his grandmother and his aunt. When the earthquake came, he was on the field with the goats, he remained there until the quake passed over. He felt very scared and he is still afraid of upcoming aftershocks and new ones. I think of how lucky it was that the quakes have happened during the day so that these children and all the other villagers were outdoors. What if it happened at night and everyone had been asleep? He tells me how much he longs to move to the Home of Hope. This feels great to hear, so now we just need to quickly get it done!
8:35 We are told that child number 8 Aren Bhandari is not at home. He is in Kathmandu with his sister and he has been ill lately with a high fever and sore throat, so he had to go to Kathmandu and be hospitalized. He feels better now but he is still with his sister so we cannot have chance to meet him today. We sit and talk for a while and they have really cute baby goats but they have a sick mother, who they cannot feed them. They keep them alive with water buffalo milk. These people are so poor that a goat could be the difference between being fed or hungry for several days.
9:00 We go to meet with child number 10, a girl named Binita and she is 11 years old. It turns out that she was not at home either. She’s with relatives in a village about 1 hour drive from Ratankot. She is there to help their relatives to read and write. They need help as they have to fill in all the papers that the authorities need to be able to get any kind of economic help to rebuild their house.
9:20 We meet other villagers that we sit down and talk with. Shyam is offered a glass of milk but I decline. Hand drawn raw water buffalo milk I do not think is the best for my Swedish stomach. One of the daughters, about 12 years, she said she was indoors when the first earthquake came and she took shelter under a bed and managed to somehow survive with only minor injuries. The whole house is completely destroyed, she really does have a guardian angel. She has a wound on her lower leg that has not healed so we ask her to come to our “medical center” at night so we can help her. Then I get the idea that Shyam could get my medical bag so he always can have it with him and in that way he can help people when he walks around the village easier. This family also needs tarpaulin.
9:45 We start going back, it is very steep uphill. We go past a man who sows rice and it feels good to see! We continue up and go past a monkey mountain, but no monkeys there today. The environment is fabulous, it’s like a jungle, vertical rock walls of 50-100 m with lots of small waterfalls, caves and climbing plants. It is in the caves that the monkeys live. Shyam says that the monkeys are of an equivalent size of a 7 year old. He recommends that one should not go past there alone because they may attack you.
11:00 Coming up to my tent, while I’m drenched in sweat. For lunch I have two eggs, a bar and a mango that I got from Shyam.
11:30 Starting to pack up in the tent because I am leaving the village in the morning. I give Shyam my medical bag, he even gets electrical tape and duct tape. He began to explain how he could use the duct tape by covering the nail holes in sheds so rain will not leak through. He is very grateful for everything.
12:00 I sit in the shade, as it’s so hot outside, it’s probably 40 degrees today too. It is only half a shadow over everything, I wear SPF 15 every day to protect me from the sun and it’s probably lucky that I do! I write the day’s diary and sends images to Sophie. I’ll take a little siesta in the heat.
14:15 A bunch of people pop up, 5 people representing authorities which 2 are police officers. They are here to take an analysis of the damage in the village and they begin with the school. This work is for the State to allocate aid resources in Nepal. They go from house to house, talking to villagers while inspecting. Many in the village show relief, they feel the hope that they will get help to rebuild their houses again. For each homeowner made a document, they measure up the house and write down all the measurements and then factor in all the damage. These papers do come under the law for which the compensation level is paid.
15:00 One of the villagers come with my medical bag and a policeman. It turns out that the policeman has been bitten by a dog in both legs and they want my help to take care of the wounds. I clean and plaster and have a whole bunch of kids as spectators, it’s probably a little more exciting that it’s a police officer. The police wear surgical masks, I guess that’s because it is so dusty but certainly also the fear of diseases. The policeman did not know a word of English, he thanks one of the villagers that translates to me. I think he is a bit shocked, he says he is a little sore but I think he has a lot of pain. The villager shows a lot of gratitude that I helped the policeman.
16:00 I’m handing out tarpaulin to those we visited in the morning and a few more, there are a total of 6 families receiving tarpaulin today.
16:30 The girl we met this morning comes and I take care of her wound on her shin. She is given things so she can clean the wound herself for a few days.
17:00 Shyam and I go with the authority to the Home of Hope. They say that perhaps we can get some help too. Shyam signs a contact and explains about the Home of Hope.
18:00 Back at my tent now and I make myself Sunday dinner fish stew the second one of the two I had with me as I had saved it until today, and it tasted delicious!
19:30 I finish writing the diary, waiting for Sophie to call. It’s the last evening and it feels a little sad. Tomorrow at 10, all the Home of Hope children we greet give me a farewell! It’s so great that they will! I think of mine and Sophie’s children and miss them, and it will be nice to come home! I will be picked up at noon tomorrow so I’ll have time to get to Kathamndu before darkness comes.
20:00 Sophie calling and she begins to tell me that Prem, Shyam’s brother wrote to her and gave very nice feedback on my work here in the village. I was very happy to hear that and it got me thinking about when you do the best you can and with heart it will most often turn out good and appreciated!