Journey to Dolpa - Experience of Mr. Mukesh Khatiwada

Journey To Dolpa

After that long journey I was completely exhausted. Actually I was tired, tired of this valley, tired of my own people, tired of waiting to see changes I aspired to be changed, I was tired of being tired. As always it was my Facebook wall and people I followed out of my engrossment that guided me there to that secluded land. My Facebook people and the Pages which I followed never posted anything out of my interest but there was this one particular post I checked out which got stuck in the inner me. I talked with her about Dolpa and not wasting any further second I decided that I must go there. On the path of my analysis came Pema sir who intensified me about its inhabitants, lifestyle, climate development and the matter of my keen interest - the school and the children up there.

It had been a nightmare for me until I started setting out my journey to Upper Dolpa taking the most pleasing burden of my life to perpetrate my project. Now I would like to give credit to another media platform YouTube which taught me to educate and provide practical hygiene related education. It took me couple of days and night while I got underground and researched about upper Dolpa from my side.

 I sorted out what needs to be sorted in here in Kathmandu and planned my trip to upper Dolpa. I don’t know if it is due to my optimistic anticipation or something else, I start experiencing wonderfulness from the way I set out. I was like singing, dancing and jumping all over the place like a child since I was happy as I felt I was answering my call. Snow, forest, river and whole lot of different terrain seemed to be welcoming me each and every day.

Journey to dolpa
Mukesh & Local Natives

           Pic : Dancing with natives of Dolpa

Every day was a different one for me as it brought me unexplainable experiences and memories. Every view seemed to have been heavenly composed. May be God spent too much time to create that paradise on Earth. It took me 10 days to reach there. I was overwhelmed when I saw that the people were so full of love, respect and hospitality.People see dolpa as a rural, snowy place but i found it a place with overwhelming gratitude and hospitality than its snows.

The hangover of Kathmandu ended there itself as everything was new and bona fide there. The food I ate, people I mate, clothes they wear and language they deliver, everything was new. As Albert Einstein once said 'I love to travel but hate to arrive'. But my journey had just began as I had a lot of works remaining to be done for the project. I had a project to accomplish. For a few days of my arrival, I put my hours into exploring the villages, distributing candies and love for them, I got from Kathmandu. I felt like a sovereign as every family was inviting me for lunch, dinner or just at least to share stories. Honestly I have never seen anyone with such love before this trip!!!

I'd like to take into consideration for Ms. Pasang Lhamo Gurung who invited me to dinner there. She was a famed personality in her sector. Though language was not clear to me, the gesture they lay upon me was enough for me to understand their love. The food was delicious and their hospitality was really amazing. They would say something in local language and I would just smile since I had no clue regarding what they spoke. There wasn't Wi-Fi facility, no TV, no fancy toilet, no geezer but the place was fantastic and the people awesome.

Her invitation made me closer with the villagers up there. Now it was easy for me to start my work. It wasn’t a problem for asking authority for any volunteering work like providing them first aid treatment or adult education (teaching to write their names etc.). I started teaching in a school. I taught two subjects basically Science and Social Studies. Little pupils are the most interesting part of my life, I didn't care how strained and wary clothes they wore, how much running nose they had or how waxy their ears had become, their little toothless smile and their innocent eyes filled with energy and passion would be enough for me to have even meditative experiences. Tears stream down my face when I recall those moments specially when watching their pictures in my camera. I spent as much as time I could with my lovely students. I felt happy to teach them. Children's of hills welcomed me. I loved them and they loved me back. I was the first person to contact them who cared and checked if they were happy or sad. I felt like a little star as everyone cheered me, showed love and gratitude as I entered their class.

When I saw changes in my class, I realized how influential I was. This encouraged me to work much harder as a teacher as the world needed quality and creative individuals for teaching. In my opinion teaching is not just a job, but a vocation to change people’s lives.

I recall the days when I was liked by them. I put myself into their shoes. It made me closer to them, I believe that for effective learning to occur, relationship building must come first. I learnt to love my work as I got touched with what I saw. Every time the students saw me coming, their faces would brighten up with smiles and that’s something that no money can buy.

Knowing that my students haven’t eaten yet and it's a way of life for them, I felt pretty sad for them.

I had enough spare time besides school. Knowing that there wasn’t any proper public health facility, it was my pleasure to help villagers in this sector too and I did what I could from my side. And still a lot of things remains to be accomplished over there in that place.

You might say language may act as a barrier but believe me my friend there exists a language, a universal language of love which even the plants can understand, a language of smile, a language of food, this would be enough for us to communicate with those kind hearted people of Upper Dolpa.

While leaving from there I felt pretty numb, tensed, I felt misery. I didn't know what was happening.

People were crying, children, women, grandfathers and grandmothers. I knew I had to go but I felt like I wanted to stay there forever. Well anyways they had arranged horses and all prestigious things as my farewell gift. At that time I had just one voice in my head and heart. It was a song, ‘...if you miss the train I am on you will know that I am gone you can hear the whistle blow a hundred miles a hundred miles a hundred miles..’.

I don't know what more to say but I know one thing the true satisfying feeling is achieved by helping others and living life for them.

These words can't describe all of my feelings, actually none of the words can describe my feelings but still I have tried my best to explain it to you all.

I was just so happy that I went there.I may or may not be there again but dolpa and people of dolpa will always remain in my heart and my memory. Those memories that I collected and those experiences that I had during my stay they will always push my nerves to go back there again. 

Hope to see those smily faces and the mesmerising nature of Dolpa again.

Thanks to all of them!!!

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