Day 2

10 Jul

Well, these blackouts are already driving me mad and I’ve been here for one day. This is not good. There are fixed schedules but they are, I believe, ridiculous.

There is only one outlet in the entire passage house that my laptop plugs into. It is in the hallway next to the bathroom, so I sit now on the floor, cross-legged, as there is not much else to be done. I am okay with this, though. Perhaps  this will teach me to be independent from my laptop. Last night I managed to connect in my room using this method: 

but today, no such luck.

I just woke up from my afternoon nap to an amazing monsoon. I didn’t go out in it, so didn’t take pictures, but the sound was incredible. I will try to record it next time.

We had our first session of orientation today. It was short – about 2 hours, and gave us the basics of the organization with which we are here. We also learned a bit about how diverse Nepal is. Over 100 ethnic communities and languages, one of which practices, brace yourself, polyandry – one wife, several husbands.

I was so shocked, though this was unrelated to our orientation I kept prodding for more information. She didn’t know much, so I looked it up. Now, of course polygamy is more common, but the fact that polyandry exists in a community here, to me, is such an amazing, unique, incredible thing.

Here’s what I learnt about it:

  • It is, as you may guess, extremely rare.
  • It exists mostly only in this part of the world: Nepal, India, Tibet, although it does exist in other parts of the world, as well
  • It is mostly derived from Religion
  • One of the major ethnic groups that practice polyandry in Nepal are called Llamas and live in very remote areas
  • One of the many reasons it is practiced is because, especially amongst poor farmers, a wife and family cannot survive on the income of only one man

Here is a picture of a Hindu woman from ancient texts/scripts that married 5 husbands. It is unclear to me whether she really existed, but still, very interesting, and apparently, influential to some communities.

Draupadi and her five husbands

I am still utterly flabbergasted. I wish I had the opportunity to go to the remote districts while here to see such things, but it looks very hard to do. Fingers crossed.

Can’t wait to find out more information about Nepal tomorrow!




3 Responses to “Day 2”

  1. Kara July 10, 2012 at 9:20 pm #

    Cool! Maybe I could have a really big diamond ring if 5 guys all paid for it…something to consider!

    • Ayesha Kamellia July 10, 2012 at 11:53 pm #

      hahaha join the llama clan i bet youd get snatched up in seconds with your blonde hair!

  2. Hayley Leonard-Paige July 11, 2012 at 3:58 am #

    Wow… I didn’t even know that existed! Men with several wives, yes, but the other way round? Learn something new every day! Maybe I should take a little trip to Nepal…

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