Asia

Traffic in Nepal: Crossing the Dotted Line at Home vs. Abroad — By Jennifer Shipp
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Traffic in Nepal: Crossing the Dotted Line at Home vs. Abroad — By Jennifer Shipp

We live in Bhaisepati, a part of Kathmandu (or a suburb, I suppose) that is fairly wealthy by Nepali standards. Our primary form of transportation has been little white taxi cabs distinguished from other white cars by their black license plates. Taxi drivers line up to wash their cars in the stinking filth of the river near where we live, standing bare foot, knee high in the water filled with the runoff ...
Straight Men Holding Hands in Kathmandu — By Jennifer Shipp
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Straight Men Holding Hands in Kathmandu — By Jennifer Shipp

One of the strangest things about Kathmandu and Nepali culture that I simply can’t wrap my head around has to do with public displays of affection. In Nepal, it isn’t appropriate to show affection toward one’s spouse or significant other in public places. Homosexuality is frowned upon. Heterosexuality is hidden. Men are openly affectionate with each other…physically.

When we walk down the ...
Soaked in Sewage, Rinsed in Dirty Water: Doin’ the Laundry in Nepal — By Jennifer Shipp
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Soaked in Sewage, Rinsed in Dirty Water: Doin’ the Laundry in Nepal — By Jennifer Shipp

In some parts of Kathmandu, there are women who can be hired to do laundry. I don’t know the specifics of how the women go about doing the laundry, but their services are advertised with a sign and they promise the laundry will be returned within a specified period of time. I’d like to think there are washing machines in a back room somewhere, but somehow, I doubt it.

I knew before we ...
Nepali Visa Ordeal: Electrical Outages and ATM’s in Kathmandu — By Jennifer Shipp
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Nepali Visa Ordeal: Electrical Outages and ATM’s in Kathmandu — By Jennifer Shipp



Getting to Nepal was no easy task, thanks to United Airlines. It wasn’t destined to be an easy task because Nepal is quite a long distance from Nebraska, but we were hopeful that once we left home, things would proceed according to plan. We were all dreading the 20 hours that we were going to have to spend on airplanes when we set out on the trip, but flight delays added many hours to ...
Maybe Rabies — By Jennifer Shipp
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Maybe Rabies — By Jennifer Shipp

I’d like to begin by talking about our bed. In photos of our vacation rental, our bed looked comfortable, but in real life, I’m sure that it’s just a piece of wood covered with a thin roll of cotton and some sheets. If I tripped and fell onto the bed by accident, I would hurt myself. It was that hard.

Normally, I pride myself on being able to adapt to things like hard beds, but last ...
United Airlines Nightmare — By Jennifer Shipp
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United Airlines Nightmare — By Jennifer Shipp

Flights, Bags, Visas

When we travel, sometimes things happen that I just don’t want to write about. They’re things that I’d rather forget or that involve lots of petty details. Often, these are things that happen en route to our destination. When we transition from here to there, I forget all the details because there are so many of them.

But I don’t ever want to forget ...
Platitudes in Purgatory — By Jennifer Shipp
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Platitudes in Purgatory — By Jennifer Shipp

Last night, John had a dream that he was trapped in purgatory. in the dream, purgatory was a giant airport. He and all the other people in purgatory had one small bag made of red fabric. Each bag was the exact same size and shape with a number on a little rectangular plaque on the top of the bag. The number indicated how many days the person carrying the bag would spend in purgatory before continuing on to ...
Jet-Lagged in Nepal — By Lydian Shipp
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Jet-Lagged in Nepal — By Lydian Shipp

It hasn't rained hardly at all.It’s the monsoon season here in Nepal, and I haven’t seen more than a few rain clouds. But to be fair, I did feel a light mist yesterday when we were out walking.I'd been expecting a lot of rain; I carefully waterproofed my shoes with special waterproofing spray before we left in preparation for the copious amounts of rain. Although I did this, I had still been looking ...
Killing Cadbury in Kathmandu– By Jennifer Shipp
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Killing Cadbury in Kathmandu– By Jennifer Shipp

There is a cream-colored puppy who lives in our apartment complex and we’ve named him Cadbury. He follows John and me when we jog and we see him sitting here and there with various residents and guards, who are always coo-ing at him and lavishing him with attention.

I’ll admit that I’m a cat person, but I still think that some dogs are cute sometimes. In the middle of the night, however, ...
Bruised Banana