|Himalyan Times Article on 27 Sept|
We are in the middle of the Dashain (pronounced Dos-ai) festival here in Nepal. It is a 15 day festival observed throughout Nepal each year. Every day has different significance with different rituals to be performed. The main days of the festival are the 7-10th days with the 10th falling on this coming Saturday. Many Nepalese travel to their home towns and villages at this time to be with their extended family for the main days.
We found this article in the paper yesterday. It estimates that 400,000 people have been leaving the Kathmandu valley for the past few days. Today is the 8th day of the festival and the streets are noticeably quiet with all schools and offices closed and most shops and restaurants too, as well as the fact the city has 2 million less people in it than last week!
We stocked up on some fruit and veg today, but can no longer get fresh bread as the bakeries have shut down. Newspapers will be out of print until after the weekend now too. We were glad of some people still working though, when a leaking pipe started spraying water in our bathroom this morning! The plumber (who was probably less pleased) came within the hour stopped the leak and will return after the weekend to replace the pipe.
Food is a very important part of the Dashain festival and goat is the meat of choice, preferred fresh. Slightly fresher than our traditional Christmas turkey. So we have seen a lot of people taking their goats home by various modes of transportation this week.
Sam and Mim were watching one this afternoon being bought in the back of a pickup truck to the butchers while I bought my vegetables next door. I hurried to finish my shopping and take them home before they were both traumatised, much to Sam’s disappointment!
And once Dashain is done, it's only 2 weeks until the next 5 day festival of Tihar (Diwali)