Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The White House

the White HouseNot the famous office of the Clinton-Lewinsky escapades, but the new home of some orphans under new guardianship of VSN (the organisation I'm with over here).

Now the kids aren't from my orphanage but another whose manager was/is under suspicion of child trafficking. Fun, fun, fun to be had here with errant managers!
So the preparation of the house was left to those with a bit of extra time on their hands. Its a huuuge house. Three floors and untold space. Feel sorry for the volunteers - these kids are gonna run wild! Although the plus side for the volunteers is that there is a pretty cool temple close by and untold chhiya places. Not too shabby really. There is a little garden oasis of sorts aswell- a four star hotel/resort that you can chill out in and listen to the birds in the avary or watch the carp in the ponds. Surprisingly enough although its on a main road, its really quiet inside. Nice.

Three days we spent there getting the place ready. And of course it wouldn't be a truely Kiwi (Nepali) affair without a fair bit of drama....

First: the lino was supposed to be laid on a Tuesday so it would be ready for the Wednesday big furniture arrival. Nepal being a somewhat superstitious country, Tuesday lino laying posed a bit of a problem. You see with a new house, you can't do anything on a Tuesday 'coz its bad luck. Sweetaz. Respect the culture. No problems.

Second: the lino is layed and all the manchester (bedding/linen) and the metal beds have been bought in. Problem was; the glue for the lino was utter shite and it didn't hold the lino down at all. By the time we rocked up to do some work, the lino was buckled and in some places was coming up. Sweetaz we can work round that or try fix it or just rip it up and have no lino at all. Myself, I was in favour of the latter. Turns out so were the powers that be, corse they had to discuss through all the various channels and wotnot first.

Third: the situation at the old home has gone to hell in a hand basket and the moving day has been postponed for one day.

the common areaFourth: the moving day. The second floor's lino has been ripped up but a piece is still needed to cover part of the floor for the cushions to be put on. Taking the initiative and assuming that the lino was now not at all useful, I cut a piece to fit the area. Well! You would have thought I'd just killed someone with all the kafuffle that ensued. But tough. T'was done. T'was sorted.

Fourth (part II): at the old home; two of our reps were cornered by the manager of the home and a number of other recruits, and told to pay the back rent or the kids had to be returned. One of our reps is a Brahmin (highest Nepali caste) so he didn't get pushed around, but the other, a wee Irish chap did get the odd shove or two. However, unlike our orphanage debacle no armed police showed up, and our reps left unarmed and without paying the rent.
The kids moved into their new home. There was a collective sigh of relief.

So how does one conclude a somewhat eventful day? Getting toasted at K-Too! (a Thamel steakhouse) of course! Drunken frivolity cures all. Huzzah!

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