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Photo by Kendall Marianacci, Nepal Semester.

Thoughts from the farm

Time spent on a farm is seldom wasted.

Neither in building a house.

For many of us this will be just a footnote in wider and richer experiences. For the elderly lady who lost her home three years ago, and who is presently moving into her new one, it is more than that.

That everything is transient is a truth that must be felt viscerally and emotionally to be understood. We spend time reflecting seriously upon it. But should it be overcome? Some truths contradict each other. We built using bamboo precisely because it will not last; it will fall back into the earth to sustain new life. Presently, concrete and plastic do not afford this; but I find it hard to believe that will forever be the case. Within forever, sameness and difference, permanence and impermanence, attachment and detachment, do not make any sense.

Connecting to the land which sustains us, materials that protect us, and ideals that guide us is a fantastic way to transition into a new travel experience. And as I explore Patan and the wider Kathmandu valley, I am struck by how many young people, in conversation, reveal they are studying forestry, agriculture, or environmental science. There has yet to be even a hint of self-aggrandisement in those revelations. Looking around with my ears open, I realise that, even at 33, I am of a previous generation.

Our students will be better.