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[scornful Galabala bite] deewali bash mein jamm ke nacha hoga budhdhe ne

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Your Brain on Altitude

We departed from Toronto at 10:35 pm on April 30th, stopped in Istanbul for 5 hours for some Turkish delights, and carried on to Kathmandu where we arrived at 6:15 am on May 2nd. Upon leaving the airport, it was quite obvious that we were no longer on the streets of Kingston.


We are staying a beautiful hotel called the Kathmandu Guest House, an urban oasis that gives us much-needed reprieve from the crowded, dusty streets of the Thamel district of Kathmandu. We spent the better part of recovering from the travel day and getting introduced to the characters that makes up our team.


We did a bit of sightseeing today and the devastation of the 2015 earthquake was very apparent in areas like Hauman-dhoka Durbar Square, where many temples and palace structures were destroyed or in some form of disrepair.


Whereas others, like the Swayambhunath (aka…

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#NepalEarthquake: Bureaucracy hinders relief

Maxwell's Notes

Originally published at on 25th April 2016

Following the devastating earthquake which struck Nepal last year, destroying over 600,000 homes, injuring 21,952 people and killing 8,964 people, the international community rallied to support the impoverished Himalayan nation, pledging over US$4 billion in aid for relief and reconstruction.

Tragically, after twelve months, the majority of this aid remains unused and affected communities continue to live in temporary shelters while reconstruction to damaged schools and medical centers has barely started.

In the months following the earthquake, the Nepalese government succeeded in providing families with initial payments for damaged homes and lost family members – providing 25,000 rupees (US$250) for families to buy corrugated sheets and warm clothes and 40,000 rupees (US$400) for the death of each family member.

Furthermore, a number of large international aid agencies such as The Red Cross, Plan International, Save the Children and UNICEF were successful in meeting…

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