Chaos… and other ways to spell Kathmandu
September 14, 2009 – 263 – Kathmandu, Nepal
It’s like waking up to find that you have just been punched in the nose and now your face is gushing blood and you feel like drowning, throwing up, and just maybe dying too. That’s how I would describe walking through the streets of Kathmandu, not just Thamel but the outside districts where tourists are discouraged from staying.
The traffic is beyond completely mad and the need to flee to a dark, quiet place fills my mind as I cautiously wander the streets. I can not seem to have a chance to actually look at my surroundings for fear that I will be smashed by a racing motorbike, rickshaw, or car in the meantime. Not that I know what it feels like but I imagine a warzone being quite similar to Nepal’s streets for all the psychological duress and constant fear of being maimed or smashed beneath tires.
Add to this the constant barrage of touts who start off by pretending to be chatty, friendly locals until they try to pull you into their shop/bus/restaurant/internet cafe and get personally offended that you, tourist, do not want to buy whatever they are selling. Shame on you tourist. It’s your job to buy things—all things—and it is my job to make you do so.
The day was thus endured and so not terribly productive. Maybe tomorrow will seem more comfortable?