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Travel Talk

10 Jun 2014




My name is Christian and I’m 34 years of age. A German native, I am currently travelling, and right now am in Nepal volunteering for social work and shall be here for 4 weeks.


My first elaborate contact with Nepali people was at Patan Durbar Square. Patan is located to the south of the capital Kathmandu.


In Patan Durbar Square, I saw a lot of older men sitting underneath the roofs and shades of temples chatting with each other. They seemed relaxed and enjoying the day as they looked around at tourists who visited the square.

Couples were there too - holding hands, whispering to each other, sitting on the stairs or under the shades of these innumerable temples. I saw artists, painters trying to catch moments with pencils and papers. 


Children came along with their parents and chased pigeons while policemen and security people stayed there mindful of public welfare.


All in all, this created quite a lovely and familial atmosphere.A bit of a contrast, local women were scattered around the Dhunge Dhara (public water supply).


They would place their empty plastic drums in a straight line, and wait for their respective turns to fill up.


Then they would carry these water containers to their houses. Nearby, some construction workers were precariously balanced on roughly assembled ladders to renovate houses. 


Very old women sitting in very small shops were selling souvenirs or weaving yarns to fabrics. Patan Durbar Square, I felt, covered all faces of Nepali people – relaxed, friendly, open-minded and peaceful; but also stressed from their hard lives and circumstances. The lack of reliable water supply resulted in people expending a lot of their energy & time, on a daily basis, to collect the most abundant resource on the planet. This seemed hard.


Patan also seemed surrounded with tourists with cameras of various sizes and makes – Asian, European and American visitors trying to capture memories from temples, goddesses and architecture.


Every picture you would take here shall cover the touristic points of interest. Yet all these pictures I would think, reveal only the past, neither the present nor the future. Travel to Nepal and meet the people here and share how the experience makes you feel.


Story & Photography: Christian Wilk


(Christian Wilk is a German citizen, currently working as a photography intern, under the guidance of professional photographer Mr. Kumar Ale at NepalSutra™).