04 May 2010
Where will I sleep tonight?
Nepal is under a major Maoist bundha, in fact, as I write, we are in the third day of the strike. Schools, businesses, government offices are all closed and no motor vehicles are allowed on the roads. To drive is to disrespect the cause and with thousands of Maoists gathering and marching in the city, that is not a good idea. Only emergency vehicles and tourist buses (which are difficult to get and only from the airport) are allowed to run. Other vehicles pass occasionally, but they take the risk of vandalism or even burning. My group was in a hotel during the last two days of their time in Nepal. We were so grateful that our Nepali friend and leader found it for us. The crucial characteristic was that the location was within walking distance of the airport and that was very handy on the day of their departure. However, I was not leaving Nepal and I had no desire and also no reservation to stay in this hotel. After the noon check out time, which had actually already passed, I was going to be homeless. Actually, I do have a home, but no way to get there during a bundha. It was Indian-run hotel and mainly served Indian people coming for a pilgrimage to the big Hindu temple just across the street. No one was really rude to us, but personally,I did not feel very welcome or comfortable in the environment. This was an unusual experience for me, because I am usually happily satisfied anywhere in Nepal and poor standards are not a problem for me. If I had Nepali friends with me, my attitude would probably have been better, but circumstances as they were, I wanted to go somewhere (almost anywhere) else. I asked the Lord to find me another place to live after the group left and waited to see how He would do it-- having no idea myself. When I went downstairs to pay the hotel bill, one of my Nepali partners was waiting at the desk. (Sent in answer to my prayer?) He was on foot, come to meet some Korean guests at the airport but first stopped by to see me. He planned to hire a tourist van for them and invited me to come along with him. Within the hour of my prayer, I was on the other side of the huge city of Kathmandu, in familiar surroundings and with Nepali people I knew and loved. Now a variety of housing options and invitations were available to me, but I was not surprised when the Lord showed a way that I could get home-- that is to Godawari, the place where I have a room with a Nepali family. I wish that I could explain to Americans what a miracle it is that I slept in my own bed last night-- but it is just one small thing that the Lord does here in Nepal.