Our friend and neighbor Ulrike has arrived from Germany and we’ve done a bit of sightseeing over the last few days. As you can imagine, that’s mostly temples (Hindu, Buddhist, often a mixture of both), small back alleys and everyday life.
It’s fun to watch how the kids interact with the locals and what they find interesting:
– being allowed to ride in taxis without seat belts
– soldiers with Gurkha knives and rifles
– corpses being burned at the Hindu Temple outside of town
and what annoys them:
– having to hold on to our hands while we’re dodging in and out of a chaotic mixture of rikshas, motor bikes and cars
– sitting in restaurants while the adults talk
– getting through their school work, especially with “the worst teacher in the world” (me)
Truth be told, this time we’re not off to a great start with them. Lara is “only” 9, but often behaves like 13. Not doing what we ask of her, lot’s of eye rolling and constantly pushing her boundaries with unbelievable energy. It’s the same back in Germany, but at home there is more time and space to “disengage” and let her be on her own for a while. Here it feels like constant close quarter combat …. and both Anna and I feel totally drained by the time we go to bed.
Let’s hope that the dynamics will change a bit once we get going on the trek … which will hopefully give the kids a chance to channel all their energy into hiking.
But there are great moments as well, in which we feel we’re “getting through” to them. There are quite a few beggars around the temples and many of them are terribly scarred from leprosy. Before falling asleep last night, Finn wanted to talk about the “poor people here that are sick”. After a long discussion, he concluded that “it isn’t fair that they weren’t born in Germany” and even considered a career change and to become a doctor instead of an astronaut. Who knows …
Later today we’ll be leaving Kathmandu and the guest house that we stayed at (highly recommended!) for a few days in the surrounding area.