Social Complexity

The Girl in Red who Wondered

I’ve heard the elders of the tribe talk by the fire at night. When they whisper as they drink their strong tea, that is when I most want to listen to their words and nods of agreement. I know now. I know how other tribes look down on us and call us names. But…how would […]

The Wealth of Western Hills

Roads winding, unwinding, winding upwards, unveiling stories and legends. Each bend brings a new chapter, a new challenge and unspoken realities. Few Napalese come to these hills.  The far West lies on the edge of imagination and  the myths of a primitive world which they do not wish to return to. Distances are furthered by […]

American Taliban or 21st Century Crusaders?

On the road again. Watching how buses and trucks waltz the bends, people hanging by the open door. There is no Big Brother ensuring seat belts are fastened, no ghostly officer belting out orders. Merely the will to arrive. And the hope that one’s destination will materialize –  not ending up off the cliff but […]

The Mysterious Magars

He looked around the dark shop before taking another sip of hot, bitter tea. “They’re stupid”, he said calmly, as if it was of no great importance. With a deep sigh, he continued, “they have been living like that since I can remember. Since my parents could remember! They never leave their hills and they […]

Unfolding the Western Hills

The hills of Western Nepal are dotted with villages, each hosting a majority of a clan and ethnic group. Nevertheless, with migration, it is not simple to trace villages and populations, for they blend together in different towns and villages, adding to the social complexity which is Nepal. Villages are scattered throughout the hills, rice […]


Connecting with Nepal began months before I actually landed. As I look down at Katmandu from my window seat, the eyes of the Stupa lock into mine, reminding me to  keep the promise of return. There are voices to find, voices to listen to, voices to unleash. And so begins the  re-tracing of my involvement […]