I keep remembering the shy smiling faces of children peeking out from behind their mother’s skirts as my group trekked through their villages on the way to Everest Base Camp in 2010. Fragile timber dwellings pinned precariously to the side of the mountain. I can’t stop my mind imagining what happened when the earthquake struck. Did these buildings collapse torn from their fragile moorings? or did entire villages actually slide off the face of the earth? and what has happened to the smiling children? Where are the monks? what happened to the colourful prayer wheels that I spun for luck and safety on my way through the mountains? What has happened to the monastery at Tengboche where I kneeled for hours, caught up in a heady mix of chanting and altitude, feeling moved by emotion I couldn’t quite understand. Back in Kathmandu where the rubble of 2,000 years is still trapping bodies in the chaos of seconds; where is the Kamari? The ‘Living Goddess’ the child confined to a silken palace until she comes of age or bleeds. Has the Goddess survived? My memories have become the stuff of nightmares and I feel so helpless and somehow guilty. Just like the hours of meditation that passed in a flash at the monastery in Tengboche, I feel moved by emotion I cannot quite understand. The horror of what has happened to Nepal this week is too big to understand.
The UN is estimating that Continue reading