Category Archives: Life

A new chapter

Every now and then there comes a time in life, when you have to move forward. This year has been the year of new beginnings for me. I got married a month after this year started and I will be leaving Bangkok a month before this year ends. November will be our last working month in Thailand.

A and I have decided to quit our jobs to start new in Nepal. This is a big leap of faith for us. For me personally, settling down in a foreign country has never been on my list. I always knew I would spend significant amount of my life in Nepal. I love my country, its culture and my parents. Now when time has come for me to start thinking about starting my own family, I cannot think of a better place than Kathmandu. Luckily I got married to a person who thinks the same. It may sound like an emotional and not well thought decision to return back to Kathmandu especially when we have good jobs that provide us with a secure life here but we have been contemplating on this since a long time and we are certain that this is the right moment for us to make the move. Kei na kei ta kaso nagariyela which means what can be the odds, we will certainly find one way or other to make things work!

I know there are going to be a lot of challenges in Nepal. It is not easy to have a good life in a country where unemployment rate is one of the highest in the world. There is going to be a lot of struggle. We might not be ready but we are prepared :). I hope to make use of the skills I’ve learned so far in life and make it useful in someway.

There is a small project that A and I are really excited about. We are looking forward to start this project in Nepal with lots of enthusiasm. As soon as it takes a share worthy shape, I will share it with you guys. In the meantime please wish us good luck :). Also would love to hear your thoughts about going back to your country to start new.


Filed under Culture, Life, ramblings

Coming in terms with life

As I wake up, Dad and I discuss about Mom’s discharge and things we need to ask the doctor. The usual routine of her Chemotherapy begins. It is the last day of her five day long Chemo sessions. As the session begins, I feel a little guilty of being tired of this place. Today, the same place that nearly frustrated me does not look so bad. The patient next to Mom’s bed has her mouth swollen. The tumor is in her lips and it is three times bigger than its normal size. The saliva drips out of her mouth all the time; that is the reason for her mouth being covered with towel most of the time. Her husband is by her side, nursing her. He is gentle as he wipes her mouth. I wonder if the husband has loved her as much all his life. Then there is the frail lady at the far end, the doctor has come to visit her. He asks her to walk in a line for him. She is feeble and she can’t walk straight. The doctor tells his son, this can result in fractures in her bones so he asks him to be careful and monitor her closely. As the doctor leaves, the lady talks to the sixty something lady by her bedside and tells her how the medicine has made her weak and she was supposed to be discharged a week ago but she’s still at the hospital. I notice they share a special bond. Their eyes speak; they tell each other “I know what you mean, I understand”. Then there is another couple, on the right of the frail lady. The husband is looking after his wife, helping her to get settled before the doctor visits her bed. He gently unties the scarf on her head; I can see her hair has completely fallen due to Chemotherapy. There are few remains of frizzy hair and it looks a little (forgive me for this) scary without the scarf. The husband tries to put together those remains of her hair and wrap the scarf around her head. It does not work the first time so he does it again. I look at his face as he wraps the scarf around her head for the second time. He has a warm kind smile on his lips and his eyes are filled with love as he gently presses the scarf to gather all the frizzy hair to form a neat knot at the back of head with the scarf. This is not an uncommon scene here at the hospital. As much as we see disease and sickly people we see and experience love, care, togetherness and healing. It is very painful at times to be at this place but I have also found profound peace and love at this same place. The mother son duo opposite to our bed is friendly. They are to be discharged today. They share some of their experiences at the hospital with us. As they take leave, the son touches my Mom’s feet as heleaves and that makes my Mom emotional. After this observation, I make peace with myself for being where I am. I feel proud and privileged to be with Mom at a time when she needs me the most. I try to settle my wandering eyes and open a book.

P.S This is the last post in my cancer diary series, you can find the rest here, here, here and here.


Filed under Cancer, Life, ramblings

A look at the sadness that surrounds

The book doesn’t keep my mind off of things going around for long. I’m tired, I had a long day today and I lay down to sleep along with all the thoughts that cloud my mind. I think of the day and I’m tired of being in a hospital. I’m tired of seeing people in pain; I’m tired of this ambience. Just last week we met a father from Pokhara who had come here with a sick child. The child had an aggressive form of blood cancer. He had been in treatment since last year. His father is well determined to save his baby.  There is another patient with the same type of blood cancer. She is also from Nepal. She is in her late 20s and has two children and a young husband. She comes to talk with my Mom sometimes and they both share thoughts on how this disease have changed their lives. Her two children are in Kathmandu and they have no idea what happened to their mother. She shares her story of how she came to know about her disease. She hopes to live but is well aware of her chances of living again. There is another middle aged couple living at the hospital since past few months. The husband in his 50s and has lung cancer. Both of their children are abroad. The wife is tired, worried and has a difficult time tending to her husband and conversing with doctors in hindi. Everywhere I look around, it is the same plot with different stories. Everyone is suffering, no one is spared. I feel like I’m living in a completely new world where nothing is certain and no one is free from pain. The scene is depressing but its the everyday of people who are here. It is cancer and it lives even outside of people suffering from this disease.

This hospital is filled with such heart wrenching stories.

I try to change the topic in my head and think about my life. I don’t know about God’s plan for me in life. I don’t know if there is a God or there are so called plans but I do not have fancy desires and wishes. I picture myself being happy in the kitchen as I make breakfast before I go to work. I like to live independently, own an apartment with a nice kitchen. I want to be working and earning enough to support my not so fancy lifestyle. I want to have a healthy social life. It would be nice to share that apartment with the person I love. I smile as I go into this realm of my imagination and at some point I fall asleep.

P.S Please follow the previous post At the wedding, Returning to an Empty nest, Going back to new normal.


Filed under Cancer, Life, ramblings

Going back to the new normal

I am at the Kathmandu airport and I’m waiting to board the flight. After I land at the Delhi airport, I take an hour long taxi ride to the hospital. I feel good for being back to be with Mom. I enter a familiar place, I reach mom’s room and there she is resting in her bed. As I see her from a distance, I notice she is not her happy self anymore. The smile on my cheerful Mom is not the same. As the dye on her hair fades, I can see traces of her gray hair, she has lost weight and her cheerful nature is not visible anymore. I don’t know why but I was expecting to find my healthy mom, the way she had been before she got the disease. It has changed her a lot, both physically and mentally. Yet she is high in spirit, I hug her and she’s very happy to see me.

I settle down for a five day stay at the hospital. I look around. Some of the faces are familiar, the nurse is familiar, some of the patients who are here for chemotherapy, the helpers and the staff, they are all familiar. I settle in and I’m happy and at peace to be with mom. I look around. There are around seven beds in this room. There is a lady in her fifties, she is very thin for her age and built. She looks like she is just 35 Kg, her son is with her. In the next bed, there is another woman, she looks like she is in her 60s, and her attendant is talking to the thin lady. The thin lady asks her if she’s admitted in the hospital for chemotherapy, the attendant tells her that the lady in her 60s finished her chemo sessions but her life is not the same. Every once in a while there are some health problems and she has to get admitted often. They both lock their eyes for a while as if they’re still communicating and get back to their respective activities. There is a new patient admitted just next to my mom’s bed. As she enters the room in a wheel chair, her mouth is covered with a face towel. Her husband is by her side, her husband and the helper struggles to lay her down on the bed. She finally settles in. I take a glance at mom to check on her. The scene makes her sad and she turns on my side and closes her eyes attempting to sleep. Just opposite to my mom’s bed, there is a rather healthy looking Punjabi lady around the same age as my mom’s. She is accompanied by her son. The son is taking good care of her, asking her if she needs anything, and peeling a banana for her. Farthest from our side there is a little girl with her mom. The girl is young around 10 0r 11 years of age and she is restless. Her Mom is admitted. As my Mom tries to sleep, I open a book to re-read the last part of it. The writer talks about the war in Afghanistan and describes the injuries and wounds of his fellow inmates. As I read this interesting journey, I think of the pain they suffer and the pain in this particular hospital room. They are similar yet so different. This pain is uninvited, unwanted and much against the will and knowledge of the bearers. The pain in the war is anticipated, known and the bearer is prepared in some way to take the pain and suffering. The pain in the war is somewhat planned and the consequences are obvious where as the source of pain in the hospital is unknown and the patients ponder upon their fate and destiny as they struggle for their lives. Besides the pain there is one more thing common in the warriors and the patients. They both fight with honor. The warriors fight with honor for their own cause expecting something in return at the end but the patients fight with honor with no expectations for a cause that is yet unknown to them and for a cause that might never be known to them. The pain is similar but the source of pain is different, very different. I travel to remote mountains of Afghanistan along with the writer. I forget for a moment that I’m in a hospital. The dialogues and the conversations in the book intrigue me.
 P.S You can catch the prequel to this post at  At the wedding, Returning to an empty nest.


Filed under Cancer, Life, ramblings

Returning to an empty nest

The wedding is over, I say the goodbyes and I return home. Someone drops me home and I know there’s going to be no one at home. It is around 6pm, it is winter and it’s a little dark outside. As I walk in, there is no electricity because of load shedding. I go to the puja room and I sit there for a while. It’s the room where mom medicates everyday and it is calm and soothing in here. I tell myself, everything is going to be fine, I smile and I go upstairs. There is no electricity but there is light in one of the rooms. I sit there and read a book. As I read the book, my mind wanders. Before we left for Delhi, we all were so happy. I was finally back from my 2 years of graduate studies. Mom was happiest to have her kid back in the house. Everyday we cooked different kinds of food and invited guests over. Life looked so normal. Soon it was Dashain and Bua was excited about the elaborate goat meat menu we would be relishing. Mom had started complaining about her recurrent stomach pain that would not go away. We had taken her to a hospital in Kathamandu and we were waiting for some tests to be done which was postponed for a week because of Dashain. We all had no clue of the upcoming storm. I was happy thinking about the good things that were coming my way. My life had been just the way I wanted it to be. I had a good job offer in hand, I was relaxed, I was home and I felt like my life was finally taking off the way I wanted it to. I guess this feeling was what we call the silence before the storm. I knew this experience would take way the “nothing can go wrong” philosophy out of my mind. I will always know our world is not perfect and that anything can happen we just have to learn how to deal with the situation.

I am glad that I’m leaving for Delhi tomorrow to be with my parents. Someone drops me at the airport and I can’t wait to board the flight, take a taxi, go straight to the hospital and hug Mom. She must be eagerly waiting for me. Although she never mentioned over the phone I’m sure she must’ve missed me.

P.S This post is the continuation of At the wedding.


Filed under Cancer, Life, ramblings

At the wedding

The music is loud and we are dancing to the same song “Sheila ki jawani” for the third time in a row. The song ends with a roar of laughter and we rest for a while  to sip a drink.  As we take a sip, another  bollywood shaadi number rolls and we’re on the floor. We ask M for a solo and she dances sexy and awesome, she’s got the moves and we’re all awed by her.  As the laughter roars again, my mind travels miles away to Delhi, I think of mom I take a deep breath and head out of the room. I miss Mom and I’m scared for having so much fun and feeling what I am feeling. I panic, I think of the pain and I panic. I feel an urge to talk to Mom, I’m scared. As I punch her number, tears trickle down my cheeks and I’m scared for being so happy because I know life is a cycle of happiness and sadness and I’m scared to feel free and feel light thinking the next feeling might be something I felt when we found out Mom’s got cancer, a severe type and the diagnosis is not so good. I get scared and I panic and tears roll down my cheeks. Mom picks up the phone and says “hello”. I’m relieved. We talk about how her day was and I inquire if everything’s going on fine. She tells me about her daily activities,  asks me to convey my regards to the bride to be. After that she tells me not to worry about her and have a lot of fun at the party and warns me not to drink a lot of wine and beer.  I try not to talk to her for long, fearing she might sense my fear. I say goodbye and promise to call her the next day. I walk back in the room; the ambience is intoxicatingly fun and light. They are still dancing to another silly bollywood number, I join in but the energy is not as high and I’m relaxed to be tensed. My fear subsides but its there and I’m relaxed that the fear is there for as long as it is there, the next feeling is going to be a good one and not a worst one, and I’m a bit relieved to believe so.

I was in Delhi since last few months with Mom to get her the treatment she needed. I came to Kathmandu for few days to attend my best friend’s wedding. Mom and Dad wanted me to attend it and take a break from the humdrum that’s been going on for months.

P.S This is post is out of my diary 2 years back. At that time Mom had been diagnosed with Cancer and I was in Delhi with her for her treatment. It will be a short 5-day series with short posts straight from my personal diary. The posts will be devoid of pictures but hope you guys will read through it regardless.


Filed under Cancer, Life, ramblings

Crazy high school days

We were tired of the usual routine of bunking class and going to the roof of the main building to waste time. Ofcourse we didn’t want to go back to the boring Physics and Chemistry lectures but we wanted to do something different that day. We were considering our options on what we could do. We had already bunked school to watch a movie. We had faked a stomach ache to go back home. We has sneaked out from classroom to watch seniors practice for the upcoming campus event. We had even asked P’s sister to call in for some emergency situation at home and left the campus to hang out in Bakery cafe.

We wanted to do something more fun that day, something that we had never done before. We were looking for adventure and some adrenaline rush. As usual, we took the first class of the day which was an English lecture by our favourite teacher. After that we left our bags in the class and went out to take a break. We saw that two of our seniors B didi and her friend had secured a job at the Admin department. On seeing us, they invited us to come and see their new office. They were working as secretary and admin staff to help the Principal. Their office was the fancy room outside of Principal’s office. They even had a TV with a VCR there. Wait did we just notice a big TV with VCR in that room. We asked B didi if she and her friend considered watching a movie in there, especially when the room was equipped and had heavy curtains with comfy chairs and a round table. We were shameless then and took no time to ask silly things. They said the room was used for showcasing informative documentaries to educate the staff and it was rarely used. We took no time to ask them if they fancied watching a movie in this room. They looked at each other shared a broad smile and said its a crazy idea but yes we could do it. After all the office building would be usually empty after 11 am and the Principal would leave before noon and come back only after 3pm. We had struck a deal with them and convinced them to watch a movie in that room. The plan would have took off then and there but we didn’t have any movie cassettes(it was 2001 and we still used video cassettes). They gave us the responsibility to get video cassette for a good movie and the plan would take off the next day after 11am when the coast had cleared. We gladly agreed and came back to our classroom all giddy and excited for the next day. Even the boring subject of projectile motion in that lecture sounded interesting. We talked how the commerce students were cool and risk taking, loathing the subject we had taken even more.

The next day P got a video cassette for ‘Dil Chahta Hai’. We had brought some chips and coke as well. The plan was to attend the first lecture and then go to the admin building with our movie cassette and snacks and spend the day watching Dil Chahta Hai. We met at B didi’s office at 11 am sharp. They had already closed the curtains, closed the adjacent door to the Principal’s office and were waiting for us. Once we got there, they let us in and closed the main door. Now the whole room was just for us. It was our private movie theatre for the day. We opened our bag, P went ahead and started operating the TV and VCR, I shared the snacks and the movie started. We had so much fun that day, the movie was exceptionally good too. We laughed, we cried and jumped with excitement during the movie keeping our voices down. And the thrill of watching movie in the Admin building of the school was something else. B didi would peek outside from the nook of the curtain time to time to ensure that our plan was going smoothly. We reduced the volume sometimes to make sure no one was outside. And at the end of the third hour, the movie came to an end. We quickly removed the video cassette from the VCR, cleaned up the room and opened the curtains. There was no one outside and our mission had become a success. We group hugged each other and laughed with excitement. We had pulled off the most daring task of watching a movie in the Admin building.

But we were not done yet. It was past 2 pm and we were hungry. B didi informed us that the Principal would be back by 3pm so we had to get going before that. I asked B didi if she had access to Principal’s office, she said yes as she was her secretary. I asked if we could see what it was like as we had never seen his office before. She just pulled the curtain at the other side of the room and Principal’s office was just adjacent to our movie room. There was a sliding glass door in between. To Principal’s horror and our delight, we saw that there was lunch on the table, probably left by the canteen staff. Just like that we decided to see what was there for lunch. We saw that there was this delicious looking chicken curry, rice and some vegetables. All of us were so hungry that we decided to “borrow” a piece of chicken from the bowl. The plan was to transfer a piece of chicken from the bowl to our tiffin box. P was given the task to transfer, B didi was watching the door, me and B didi’s friend were instructing P on how to do the job. As she intended to transfer just one piece from the bowl to the box, almost 80% of the dish slipped to our tiffin with only a tiny price of chicken and little curry remaining in the bowl. At this point all three of us went hysterical laughing hard in the Principal’s office. B didi joined in to see what happened and she was a little terrified. We quickly composed ourselves and slid the glass door close, closed the curtains and were back in B didi’s office. We ate the chicken :P. The most crazy day of our high school had come to a tasty end.

Wait there’s one more thing. The next day we went to B didi’s office during lunch to inquire if things went fine. She said no one had asked her anything and we were safe. As we chatted with them, we all wondered what was there for Principal’s lunch that day :D.

Those were the crazy +2 days. I hated studying science and was never interested in the lectures and P was my best friend cum partner in crime. I wish I had some picture of me and P from those days but I don’t have it here. Have you guys done anything crazy in your high school days?


Filed under Culture, Life, ramblings

All I wish

All I wish to be is a ray of light in the dark
All I wish to be is the warmth of sun in winter
Oh how I wish to be a raindrop in the clouds
All I want to be is a heartbeat in your soul

Oh how I wish to be the fragrance of a rose
All I wish is to be is a medium for your grace
And all I dream about is a peaceful meadow and such
Again and again I hope for a soulful song of earth

Bless me with thy merciful heart
I shall not look upon thee for anything I do not deserve
I offer you a promise to serve you in your purpose
All I am is a token of your love

I reap and sow the seeds of your creation
I shall not indulge in the plentiful world
All I wish for is a chance to discover
All I wish for is a life of devotion

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Filed under Life, ramblings

Reminiscing the childhood days

Kathmandu city is my home town. I was born and brought up there. My father built his first house in the religious town of Swayambhu. I spent my beautiful years of childhood in this town. I have fond memories of times spent there. I was born in the mid 80s. We played lots of indoor and outdoor games while growing up.

Although I have only one elder brother, we grew up playing childhood games with the kids in our neighbourhood. We played games like lukamari or hide and seek, dhyappa or touch and run, 7 stones, guccha or marbles, bhada kuti(literally translates to utensils, a play game like tea party where children play with miniature utensils) and several other games in which we pretended like we were adults, my favourite one was playing a married woman or playing a Mom :P. I was the youngest in the group so I never really got to participate in a more challenging game like dhyappa, lukamari and 7 stones. They would let me play but I would be a dudh-bhat(literally translates to milk and rice) or chusya musya(literally translates to small bits) in these games. This was because I could not run as fast as them and would cry if I was out of the game too soon. Being a dudh-bhat meant that I could play on even though I was out of the game and no other players took me seriously in the game. After a while I would realise that no one was chasing me or looking for me and I would start to cry. This was the reason my brother was embarrassed of me and he rarely took me with him to play. So, I usually played bhada kuti alone in the terrace. I often used to ask Mom to lend me some rice and I would use some shrubs as veggies and play my game.

Growing up in the Swayambhu area, we went to the nearby museum during weekends, we swayed in the huge rotating prayer wheels in the Gumba(Monastary), chased monkeys and sometimes they chased us back. We never missed to visit the Swayambhunath temple during special occasions like Buddha Jayanti, Saraswati Puja, Guru Purnima and whenever we passed an exam. Our school was in walking distance from home, so I used to walk with my brother to school. When we were young, my brother was very shy and I was the opposite. He never allowed me to talk to him and I was never to come to find him during school hours. He asked me to wait outside the gate after the school was over and we could walk back together. But I was not of the kind who would obey rules :P. I would go outside his class with my friends, point at him and tell my friends that I had an elder brother and run back to our playing area. Sometimes, I would go to the playground where he would be playing, poke him and run back to the class. At home my brother was different. He would play with me, teach me how to turn on a radio, show me his video game but at school it was a different story.

We lived in Swayanbhu area until I was in the 3rd Grade, I think. After that, we moved to another town and changed school. Another thing I remember about being in that area is the food like gwara mari(a kind of fermented and fried pastry), momo cha(dumplings), aloo sandheko and many more. I will write a different post to talk about this.

I wish I could post the picture I have in my mind of those times. Last year when we were in Kathmandu, we drove passed this area. Our house was still there and it was the same little house with yellow paint but the locality has changed drastically. There are a lot more people and many more houses now and everything looked so small and crowded.

So, this is a slice of my life from my childhood. Hope you guys will enjoy reading it and do share about your own childhood experiences and the games you played as kids.


Filed under Culture, Life, ramblings

What makes our relationship work?

A and I have been together for almost 2 years and we’ve been married for about 5 months now. Its been a jolly ride since we’ve been together and I love my life with A. Almost all my friends in this blogo-sphere have a rocking relationship with their spouse or husband, which reminds me how lucky I am to have a rocking relationship like you all :).
Every couple is different and each relationship works in its unique way. Today I want to share what makes our relationship work.

  1. We try not to judge each other. There was a time when I thought that A was of a certain type :P. At that time I didn’t know him that well and was judging him based on the “circumstances”. But as I got to know him, I learnt how wrong it was to judge someone. Once I let this initial ice break, it has been a pleasure to discover him. He is not a perfect person and neither am I. We both know this and we’re perfectly ok with each other.
  2. We are friends first. On top of everything else we’re friends first. We enjoy each others company a lot. We are not the type of friends who are all praises about each other. He is my first and foremost critique. Well, it doesn’t feel good to be confronted for your not so good side but A confronts me anyway. At first, I may be upset or even argue but at the end I always come out a better person. We do not sugar coat each other on unnecessary things. If something needs to be said, we say it but we also explain why and make each other understand and often we end up smirking on what an a** we’ve been at a certain situation.
  3. We love and respect each others family. When you get married to a person, you marry the entire family, even the extended family. We make it a point never to small talk about our respective in laws. We both understand its a very sensitive area. I love my parents and so does he, we both know the importance of family and we never judge each others family about the petty little things. This way, I can talk about my own insecurities regarding my parents with him and vice-versa knowing that we’re just human after all. And this applies not only to our families but to our friends too.
  4. We adapt. At first when I met A, he didn’t know anything at all about cooking. When I mentioned the word cooking at home, he used to get irritated for having to spend his evening doing something as silly as cooking when you could easily order anything from outside. But we’ve come a long way since then. A not only helps me to cook but he has started to enjoy cooking now. On the other hand, I was very introverted and shy about sports. I didn’t know how to play any outdoor sports. But now, we play badminton every other evening and I enjoy it a lot.
  5. We have our freedom. If we go to a restaurant, we don’t hesitate to order the dish that only one of us likes. Although this freedom was not easy come, we both have learned to understand that we are two individuals. It may sound silly to put this point here but for us its definitely worth a mention. At the beginning when we were dating, I used to be annoyed when A didn’t eat the food I ordered for him or didn’t say “I’ll have whatever you order(for me)”. He always said,”Ok lets order that but I’ll have this one today”. I had seen all my friends and their spouses having no problem at all when their wives/girlfriends ordered food for them. But A is not like that. He has always known what he wants and this goes for what he wants to eat as well.
  6. We compromise. Yes we do compromise. One example is the kind of movies we want to watch. A is fond of action thriller, horror and detective movies. I am fond of drama, reality based and romantic movies. I get tired of watching all the violence on screen but I watch it anyway. A feels sleepy during the drama movies but he watches it anyway. Apart from this, we compromise on many more things without remorse and this is what makes our relationship stronger.

And the list is longer but these are the basics that make our relationship work. However there are things that we’re still learning about each other and we are still on the phase of discovering each other. A relationship brings discipline in life, it teaches us to live above ourselves and think of another being first. I feel blessed to have A in my life. It all makes sense, he is a perfect match for me. The other day we had a little dispute with our friend. All of us were saying a thing or two but he was silent. When I asked him why, he talked about Gautam Buddha’s teachings by saying, “We all could win by arguing but before we argue we have to be able to differentiate if the argument is worthy of what comes after it”. He went on to say, I am not against putting our points forward in an argument and we could be telling the truth but what we have to learn is to rise above and think is it really worth it? Will it really make things better? If it does, I would be the first one to voice out but if it doesn’t whats the point? I could not refute him and I was glad about it.

Above all, we both have learned to be a better human being from each other and this is what makes our bond even stronger.


Filed under Life, ramblings