I don’t know if you would ever read this or if you would, but after the storm has passed. Obviously catching up on random WP blogs and social media are not priority, I understand.
A few days ago a terrible earthquake shook and tore the beautiful Kathmandu I know. I’ve been there twice and it was love at first site. From the rickety airport that looks similar to our central railway station here in Colombo to (only) the main roads of Kathmandu City that were done up with the same haste and sham as our pavements for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, we have a lot in common.
You, Nepal have also a special place in my heart. Some of my closest friends live there and having lived amongst you people while in university and while on work, I cannot help but be genuinely devastated by the disaster that has engulfed you.
I don’t recall myself being as emotional when the tsunami struck in 2004.
That may perhaps be a result of the lesson in journalism we were taught: familiarity. Media and individuals consider what is newsworthy, based on a few factors namely proximity and level diplomatic importance. The latter of which would mostly be important for media and state-related news I suppose. The proximity of newsworthy-ness refers more often than not, to the geographical proximity of things. This is why, news of Modi or the Great Wall of China collapsing would be important to us. This also very strategically ties up with diplomatic importance, in this instance funding. But Nepal? Last I checked, Nepal was as significant as the recent climatic disasters in Chile. Of course, some may argue that I am concerned by these topics due to my line of work, but it is not always the case. I have a few online friends in South America and some of my closest friends in Nepal. This becomes proximity to me and hence, the news I follow may seem different from what is shown on television.
Nepal, I hope you are safe and please keep your people safe. They mean a lot to me and trust me, these people are trying. They are trying to remove themselves from the political and diplomatic clutches while at the same time trying to become self-sufficient and they try to maintain political stability. It’s not easy. Coming from Sri Lanka, I know it is not. But please keep trying and do rebuild your City and bring to life the political willpower and positivity you as a people have in yourself. The news tells me that your Government is doing a splendid job and I hope the news does not lie.
I don’t pray, Nepal, I’m sorry. But in my hearts of hearts, when I silently wish for things, I wish for your safety and your health. I want to come back to Kathmandu as much as I want to go back to South India or even come home after a long day’s work. Keep your city safe and your people happy.