Sleeping with Goats
As you grow older and not so wiser, you realize certain patterns on how you and your body behaves. I am not sure how you develop these strangely polarized, “totally at the end of the spectrum” behaviors but somehow you do. Well at least I did.
For me, I have two states of extreme behavioral patterns. One of hyper-activeness where I tend to ready to do just about anything at that point in time and one that of hyper-laziness where even pressing a button of on the mouse or on the remote controller seems to be daunting task. While I tend to skew myself around the laziness area (don’t blame me….ok blame me), I do happen to venture far end towards being active in a very weird way. Or shall I saw in a very walky way.
Believe or not, I like walking. I walk everyday back from the lab to home and back from home to the lab. My phone keeps a tab of the hours (minutes actually) of walk I do everyday and that helps me feel good about myself. For someone who keeps a two push-up, one sit-up, “omg I can’t stand up” regime, it’s encouraging to say the least. But there were times when I did do a month’s worth of walking in a single day.
This one time I was accompanying a team from Kathmandu University led by non other than maskey sr himself into a place I had never imagined existed. Having had travelled on the road till noon (till where the road ended actually) and then continued on foot till the moon was well and truly above our heads, we managed to reach a village called Amalbesi. It was our destination, we had finally arrived.
Now bundled together in the modestly built, firewood lit kitchen in this double storied hut, we warmed ourselves to a plate of rice and daal and nothing else. It was a feast considering people don’t get to eat rice, unless it’s Dashain of course. I try to swallow what’s in front of me, but boy was it hard. A spoiled brat like me had difficulty eating someone’s yearly meal. The only way forward was to ask for dried, dark red chilies that my dad had effortlessly spotted.
“Khai tyo khursani chakhi herum ta?” (Let’s see how that chilly tastes) my dad pointed out into a candle lit cabinet on the right. “Bhaihalcha ni hajur” (Of, course, I will get it for you) replied our host. Needless to say, there wasn’t a trace of food left after we had one bite of those awesomely hot peppers. With that now done and dusted, we took out our sleeping bags out and off we dozed into dreams of paradise we long left behind.
I slowly opened my eyes as I tried to ascertain who the f*** was trying to wake me up in this wee hours of the morning. I let my visuals blur a bit in the beginning but as it began to clear out, I couldn’t believe what was right in front of me. A half white patched black goat trying eat off my hair.
“SHOOOOOO!” I mentioned it away only to notice there were about a dozen of them inside where we were sleeping! Dozen!
“Its our alarm, sir” laughed one of the locals who had just woken up to me screaming, “we must keep them inside, you never know what might just take them away!”
At this point, I knew I was going to have a very long week indeed. “Where’s the toilet?” I ask, as I have a habit of going for number 2 every morning. I knew I had to do it soon because my dad and me share the same habit and it usually becomes a headache in the morning when there’s only one bathroom amongst us. Our host mentions its outside, a minutes walk on the left. I follow his directions and go inside quietly about my business.
As I sit down and wonder around killing time, I notice this green bucket in front me. A green bucket eh? I think to myself. A wave of dejavuish thingi hits me… did I see this same bucket somewhere? Nah I must have seen it back in Banepa, there’s always buckets in the bathrooms anyways. People need water to clean, you know, clean stuff.
Well, don’t look at me like that, the concept of using toilet rolls only came after I came to South Korea. The first dump I went to take in here, I literally thought the toilet was broken. How can a place where you shit not have a tap? I thought. I checked out the next and it was all designed the same. I was basically “forced into” using rolls anyhow.
Anyways, back to the story. I finish up my business and off I come out fresh and refreshed like pressing F5 on windows. I smell the awesome fresh air but as I take my first breaths, I see something at the corner of my eye that simply baffles me.
There at in front of the hut’s aagan (the ground right in front of the hut), some mom is carrying her kid. The kids not bothered to wear any underwear as his mom isn’t too bothered anyways. I look at the kids tinny cheeky butts until, well, he shits. Right there. It falls on the ground. The mom is least bothered and they just walk away.
I swear to god, I am not making this up, but in five minutes the shit disappears. Completely, it’s like it never happened. How? Well blame the chickens and the goats and the small kids (I mean you see a lot of them, a lot. Somebody should bring a truckload of condoms in this village) who nonchalantly step on and run away, some, sadly, inside the place where we were sleeping. And need to sleep that very day.
I sigh and walk awkwardly back in making sure I don’t step on the scene of the crime.
As the day goes by and it’s time to bundle up and eat the last meal of the day, the host lady is washing spinach on a bucket that looks strikingly dejavuish again. I stretch closer to have a look as the lady smiles at curious me. I place a weak smile on my face and examine the color in this dimly kerosene lit room.
No, it can’t possibly be. It’s not what I think it is. And I am making sure I don’t walk out to the bathroom to check on it, I say to myself. But as I am thinking this, my body is already making strides towards my destination, the suspicion is just too much to bear. I instinctively open the door and point my torch to where I think a bucket should be.
It’s not there.
Anyways, it's madeinepal's third year running now and I would like to take the time to thank you all for reading and keeping up with all the horrible, yet uncharacteristically bloggy, dodgy posts. Its been a year of growth for both me and the blog and lets hope 2015 will show some shades of green as well.
Oh i meant, blue. yeah blue is nice.