He's a struggling writer. He aims to write only what he's experienced in his life.
How My Year Began
I tried to jump out from my bed, but I was nailed back as if shot by an arrow on my left chest.
Then I gently raised my fingers below my nosetrills and checked my breathing. Was the air flowing in and out? Yes, it was.
Then I felt the chest with my left palm to check if the pain was in the heart or over the rib.
After pressing gently, I figured it out that it was on the surface of the ribs. So, some hope lit up in my mind.
I lied down for a while I took slow long breath to regain energy.
Then I shot a text message to my home tuition pupil: “I can’t come at 6am. Sorry.”
After two hours, I left my bed. This time, I could sit on. but while I coughed my chest still pained. I then dressed up.
I walked till Boudha gate. Upon reaching there, I got the sad news. Nir Kumari had passed away.
I walked further north up to the community centre from the Stupa. I found no one there. I came to know that her last remain was kept in the church located further to the east from where I stood.
I walked back to the main road. Then I took the wayside to the east. By half an hour, I crossed the Bagmati river flowing by Jambu Danda (hill) where Buddhists cremate the dead body.
Walking along the road, I got a call from my wife asking me to attend the funeral. I told her I was on the way. She had gone out of the Valley to celebrate the new year with her relatives
After the enquiry of where about of the church, I finally, I climbed the staircases of the church on the 4th floor.
The congregation prayed for her soul. Then her younger brother shared his witness how he had tried to save his sister while she was suffering from cancer. Next person was her son who shared what his mother had told him oneday,
'We need to build our own home, my son."
He wiped his tears while sharing his mom's wish. He promised he would work hard to earn money and build a house some day, but his mom would't be there.
Finally, the pastor shared about her life as a true believer. Then he infromed the believers that only family members would join him for the funeral
Then they carried her coffin down stairs to the jeep.
In half an hour, the pastor and his helpers drove to the burial ground in the jungle in Kirateswor.
By the time, I arrived with others in a bus ride her coffin had already been burried.
As final act was over, it was already noon. So, I texted again to my pupil for being late. I didn't visit her.
May I Quote John Hansen
Wake up to the sunrise
And greet a brand new day
Throw out your arms in gratitude
Lift up your head and pray
Embrace this fresh beginning
As the New Year starts to dawn
Forget all that has gone before,
Act like you've just been born
I couldn’t not leave the bed in the following morning also. Pain on the chest relapsed. I texted my student, "sorry, can't come."
I felt tired and drained. Bed rest was the best solution. My pupil texted me repeatedly.
My only text to her was: "Let’s meet in Pashupatinath temple tomorrow."
The following noon, we met sharp on time beside the Pashupati Main gate. Then we walked to the bench to the east of Pashupatinath Temple, crossed the river and climbed through the straircases and we sat down side by side on a bench.
I listened to her story first. After listening to her mind. I understood she had so much of expectation from me to guide her through English. So, she wanted to study English class with fresh mind right from the first day of the year.
So, she had waited for my arrival at 6am onward for 3 days.in the morning.
I couldn’t tell her through the phone or message what the real problem was.
After listening to her patiently, I came to know that she had thought that I would stop her tutoring for ever. She need not have told me how she felt. Her face had already expressed it.
At the same time, I was watchful if she would jump to the river below, I would catch her by her feet. That was the only last energy left in me and my frightening imagination going on about her in my mind.
After listening to her story, I didn't feel like telling my story. Instead, I said I would come at 6am sharp the following morning.
The following day, I visited her. We resumed our morning class.
Morning Sun on the Bank of Bagmati River
Tea-Shop Owner Scowls at Me
I joined a group of walkers approximately 1500 to Shivapuri Hill on 12 of February. That was related to Visit Nepal Year 2020.
The Tourism Minister had the vision to create awareness to promote internal tourism. It was an on going program through out the year in various places of Nepal.
Binod gave me money which I had not expected of. He had gotten paid for the brochure he had dealt with the Boudha tourism committee for upgrading the brochure with complete new outlook.
He had done research and written the new refined text in Nepali and he had photographs. He had offered me to translate into English in September of previous year.
It was a great opportunity for me to learn more about the Stupa and its story, Buddhism practice, culture and society.
After getting paid on 14thh of March 2021, the following morning, went to the tea shop to pay my due. The shop was not open yet.
So, I paid the money to his wife who was on the street shopping. The owner heard my voice and from inside scowled at me.
“you are a cheat!”
I had no time to listen to him. Because I had to rush to my pupil's rented flat.
English Class Stops, Fear of Breaking the Law of the Land, Fear of Corona
I felt my physical strength was waning day by day right from the morning. My pupil had hinted me repeatedly as if I had no passion to teach her.
I had no option rather than stop her tutoring for ever.
I resumed my visit to my private sacred sactuary surounded by tall trees and monkeys chasing each other for suprimacy. That my morning and evening walk.
As days passed, the Nepal government declared nationwide lock down on 24 th of March.
I felt happy because I got the opportunity to spend my time with my wife and son. We had lunch and supper together at home with my wife. I watched TV news and programs related to covid-19.
Would the scientists come up with timely solution to save the world? My mind waited anxiously each time I watched the news updates.
Lock down was enough for me in the second month of May. The news from around the world made me mentally monotonous and depressing.
In order to refresh my mind, I started reading Gita-Sangrah (25 Gita Collection). I translated one of them into English.
Lock down was a little relaxed in the 3nd month onwards. People could go out for shopping for one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening.
So, I called on David’s guest house one morning. I found him in perfectly in good health, but his face looked worried. Because his tourist visa had expired from 26th of February.
As he told me he had visited the Immigration on 25th of February to extend tourist visa. His passport had not even small space left blank for stamping new visa. That was reason, officers in Nepal Immigration had asked for his new passport.
Accordingly, he had applied for his new passport online to HMPO on 26 of February’20.
By the time his new passport would have arrived, all offices were closed down including the Immigration office.
After listening to his problem, I asked him if could do the running aournd for him. He appreciated my gesture, so, I approached the Foreign Ministry, the British Embassy and Immigration online and phone calls. The concerned officers responded promptly.
From 21July, the immigration and Bishwa Bhasha Campus partially opened, so, I visited those offices.
As a result, he obtained tourist visa from 26th of Feb till 6th of August, then he obtained student visa till 6th of Jan’21.
Tek Nath, the director of the Immigration understood his situation well and considered him for visa expecting for his new passport to arrive.
Later on, a lady from U.K. also helped him to verify again his online passport.
Though he obtained student visa, the campus couldn’t start physically.
I found that he obtained visa, but he was penalised for no fault of his. However, he was happy to have been able to abide by the law of the land.
© 2021 gyanendra mocktan