brian harris journals

photographer Brian Harris' Journal from India and Nepal

Saturday, February 5 –Tuesday, February 8, 2005
I had not planned to be writing so soon. However the recent events in Nepal have prompted me to consider family and others who might be concerned about what we may decide to do. A quick update for those who have not heard the news. The King of Nepal, King Gyanendra has sacked the government thereby suspending the democratic process. Many leaders of the opposition have been put in jail, media controls initiated and all telecommunications blocked in & out of the country. Public protests have begun and the death of protesters are being reported in Indian newspapers.

As of Tuesday, telephone lines are open for several hours a day, but in Nepal only. Obviously this unstable situation and how it unfolds will determine if we continue with our plans to spend about 45 days in Nepal shooting material for the Beauty & Transformation show.

The most immediate practical concern are our flights to Kathmandu and the project travel plans of Andrew Deiters and Liea Fraser. Andrew & Liea are to meet us in Delhi in about 5 weeks and then join us in our work in Nepal. Andrew to help me with still and video photography and Liea with an inservice program of AIDS awareness training for the hospital in Tansen and Lumbini.

Paula and I are fine. We are dealing with jet lag and getting all the things done here in Delhi that we need to do to set our selves up for the next 5 months. The two friends we have met up with here at Likir Guest House are Betsy Napper and Debi Goldman from the Tibetan Nuns Project.

India is a land of many things: exotic sounds, smells and tastes, waiting (but not so much as in the past), and carbohydrates to name a few old acquaintances. Chaotically dense India is putting up a valiant struggle against the efficiencies of predictable modern India.

Now in our room we have yet to become accustomed to it doubling as a passage way for the guest house staff to our balcony, which is used as a common cloths drying area. Paula has begun a jihad against any mosquito that should become so unlucky to chance upon our room. She has commandeered my blanket to stuff under the balcony door, performs regular snapping towel patrols, focusing on the bathroom and will be today, consulting local pharmacies for additional products to add to her already sizeable arsenal of WMD. As for me, I have established easy routes to all my addictions, the most important being a cup of home made, dark roasted, milk coffee at 5 in the morning. Yes....we have arrived in India!

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