Impressions of the First Day Plus / ネパールでの活動一日目(2)

-From Midori

Today was our first day of activities and presentations in Nepal. After warming up rather publicly in the hotel dining room (this was the only place I was told that I could play my violin without disturbing others), we left our lodgings at 8:15. By the way, I’m really confused by the time here in Nepal. It’s 5 hours and 45 minutes ahead of GMT. I am not used to the idea of the +45 minutes portion of the time difference!

The good news is that my violin seems to be enjoying the Kathmandu climate. I’m feeling the altitude a bit but the violin seems pretty cool with what’s happening. I managed to squeeze in my own practicing in the morning, for repertoire in January.

The first day of presentations in a new setting for me is always exciting. I’m frequently asked, “what would you like your listeners to get from your music.” My answer: “whatever they are willing to receive.” And in return, we receive so much. I am trying to breathe in everything, and it’s amazing, both emotionally and kinesthetically!

Our activities begun this morning at a hospital for children with disabilities. On site, besides the hospital, they also have a workshop to create custom-made artificial limbs and legs as well as a school and education center for the parents and the caretakers. Additionally, the organization has extensive satellite and mobile posts around the country. These off sites are able to carry on some less complicated treatment and the educational outreach. At these satellites, the staff also makes assessments as to which of the cases are necessary to be treated at the main hospital and figures out a way to get the patients to reach the hospital. It is usually not an easy journey, taking at least a few days, and of course, that means the accompanying financial difficulty. It is not just the expense of the trip but also the loss of daily wages during it.

What I was so impressed with was that the organization takes education with great seriousness. That the treatment and rehabilitation enable children to have access to education is an important philosophy their leaders abide by. Parental education to decrease potential abuse of children with disabilities is also vigorously given. We learned that the likelihood of abuse is even higher for children with disabilities, but that it comes partly from not knowing what actually is abusive and that they have long-lasting and tragic consequences physically, psychologically, and socially.

While I can still only say one word, “Namaste”, in Nepali, I am receiving much warmth, and I can feel the kindness and the gentleness that the people here have towards their neighbors. These aren’t exactly easily described in tactile, verbal ways–at least it’s not within any of my language skills to write about–but I definitely sense it very fully in sentiments.

Onwards from the Hospital, we had two more visits with several presentations. (We sometimes give multiple presentations at one institution. For example, we do mini-presentations in various individual wards and units of a single hospital.) The day was very full, and I ended my day with Nepalese tea–excellent and very addicting for me. I am sure that by the end of the trip, I would have consumed gallons of it! And finally, a big Thank You to the hotel lobby staff for allowing me to get some more practicing done in the evening! They let me do it right in the lobby. It’s not exactly always a pleasant listening experience to be subjugated to somebody’s practice… and I am now off to bed, with the hot water bottle to keep me cozy through the night!








五嶋 みどり


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