Angel of Kathmandu

25th February, 2009 - Posted by salliegratch - No Replies

Kathmandu, Nepal, January 16:

Question: when do you know a woman trusts you?
Answer: when, in a public toilet, she asks you to watch her purse while she goes into the toilet stall.

This is what happened in the Kathmandu airport. I walked into the women’s toilet to be confronted with a familiar stench and a row of urinals. Spotting several enclosed toilet stalls, and refusing to leave, I dismissed the urinals and started to head for a stall when a lively woman walked in and exclaimed, “what are those urinals doing here?” We laughed about it, the stench, and our shared intent to ignore the possibility we may be in the men’s room.

We quickly forgot the primary reason we both had entered the women’s toilet, and began to ask questions of each other. Before long, she knew about Women Founders Collective, about our travels, in particular, our search for women founders in Kathmandu. Betsy soon joined us, and within moments, the three of us had decided that our new friend would host our WFC Kathmandu meeting at her house.

You won’t be surprised to know that this woman’s name is Angela, truly our angel here in Kathmandu! She has kept close tabs with us during our stay, offering to take us to our hotel from the airport, inviting us to her home for dinner, planning an outing to view the Himalayas from a hilltop…and the list goes on and on.

The women we have been meeting on our travels are very much like Angela, eager to assist us, to share their lives with us, to welcome us into their work, to learn about WFC. Rekha Mody, our host in Kolkata and the reason for our being here, has orchestrated our movements within India and Nepal. Although originally planning to be with us throughout our travels, Rekha is heading to Los Angeles where she will be working on an exhibition to mark India’s 60th anniversary, their independence from the British. The exhibit opens in August, 2007.

So Betsy and I are on our own now. Equipped with Rekha’s network, names and phone numbers of women in both Kathmandu and Delhi (with a side trip to Agra to see the Taj Mahal), and with the prospects of meeting more Angela’s along the way, Betsy and I are in good hands!

And yes, Angela did ask me to watch her purse when she walked into the toilet stall!

To be continued. Sallie January 16, 2007

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Posted on: February 25, 2009

Filed under: Archives 2007

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