Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Not in the hot zone

Not having a blast
Kathmandu, Nepal


Hi everyone, just dropping a line to say I have been unable to connect via the laptop for several days here. I'm not too worried, no one else could either....so have finally made my way to the rickety cyber cafe.

Also letting everyone know that, though there were tragic bomb blasts in both Kashmir and Bombay today, I was nowhere near either. (I am lucky enough to have people worry about me every time a bomb goes off anywhere in South Asia. That's a good thing.)

So far, 200 people are said to have died in Bombay; and at least 7 people including some tourists died in Kashmir in five separate, synchronized explosions. The reports I've read say they believe these attacks - occurring in two very distant cities - were related. You can read the full stories here, but these links will be outdated in a few hours: Blasts hit Bombay commuter trains Five tourists killed in Srinagar attacks

Happy Birthday to Who?

Biggest news here was that the King's birthday wasn't. That is, it was not a holiday, for the first time ever in the history of
Nepali government. They had a celebration at the palace and even a 21-gun salute, but the government offices, schools and so on stayed closed. This is big news.

Strangely, it was July 7, the day following the Dalai Lama's birthday. Even more strange, the Dalai Lama and George W. Bush share the same birthday. (Eleven years apart, but still.)

What really pissed me off was waking up the next morning seeing photos in the paper of *civilians* lined up to come inside the Palace and greet the King. The Palace! Inside! you mean, if we had KNOWN about it we could have gone and met one of the very last sitting monarchs in the world?!?! Now I've lost all my sympathy for the newly liberated Nepali press. What good are they if they can't give me advance notice of such photo opps?

3 comments:

Shinu Mathew said...

Siren,
I was in the same train where one of those explosion took place. I got detailed pics of it coming up as I was the first camera man at site. Exclusive pics as as when others reached the spot, it was all over.
And a detailed account of the tragedy!
please do not lambast me for saying I got exclusive pics! I do have a heart and I wept later, but the cameraman inside me possessed me at that time!

whistlingwoods said...
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whistlingwoods said...

Hi Sirensongs,

I love you blog entries. Keep blogging.


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