Wednesday, June 18, 2008
In America we have all lived through (in the big cities) or have heard of a sanitation worker, fireman, or other sort of strike. We have them but they are not common. In Nepal, there is some sort of strike nearly everyday. It is usually a transportation strike,and the buses, microbuses, and safa tempos do not run. Sometimes the strikes happen because of petrol prices; sometimes because of a non-transportation-related political protest; sometimes because a bus or taxi driver have been robbed, or even worse, stabbed. I take a taxi to work and have luckily found a very polite Buddhist driver that I meet each morning. Some mornings we are on our merry way then encounter a strike-related road block. It might just be the traffic police directing us another way or maybe buses parked horizontally across the road, blocking it. It might be students or young men protesting on the street corners and interfering with traffic flow at the intersections. Remember that most people go to work and other places here in Nepal via public transportation. BIG problem. I'm glad I am living here so I can begin to understand some of the reasons why, experientially, things evolve so slowly. Getting work done, running errands and accomplishing the chores of everyday life take a LOT of effort, planning and energy here in Nepal. It is tough.