I have been wearing the same pants for at least 9 days now. Not in a row, but since they have been washed. I usually wash them after each time I wear them. Perhaps a little extreme, but hey...I'm extreme.
Today I’m dreaming of a washer and dryer, ridding my clothes of the damp, sweaty smell that lingers even after being washed by hand and left to dry for days in the rain. I’m dreaming of taking a shower, with a shower curtain- in hot water. Maybe I’ll even take a bubble bath, who knows? I’m even excited to drink a huge water bottle full of tap water, with ice. And I’ll be happy to use a toilet that flushes toilet paper. While I recognize that these things sound silly, to me they’re important and I haven’t had them for a little over two weeks now. Sure, I miss my friends and family. And my cat. I miss my cell phone, my job, and my car, too. But mostly I miss being and feeling clean.
I feel like I’ve been on a two week camping trip, yet not at all. I realize that so many people around the world don’t have clean drinking water or clean clothes. Not everyone gets to shower 3 times a day. Having a toilet that flushes is not a necessity and soap is out of the question for so many. The more I’m here, the more I realize that I have it pretty good at home. I usually consider myself a poor college student…because I am, but my definition of poor doesn’t compare to what poor means here in Nepal.
As my time here in Nepal is coming to a close, I’m getting used to cold and, at best, lukewarm showers, dirty clothes, and being sweaty. I’m enjoying the no make-up, no shaving and wearing the same clothes for days. I am starting to wonder what it will be like to have to get ready in the morning. Showering and putting on make-up for work seems a bit extreme at this point. Nepal has been wonderful and I think I could get used to it. Next time I won’t bother packing make-up or hair products. It’s useless here anyway. I’ll just save more room for awesome stuff to take back home.
Even though I’m a spoiled, whiny, brat and can’t stand to be dirty, this trip has been very eye-opening and insightful. The more I learn about and experience here in Nepal, the more I am grateful for the things that I have and for the opportunities that I’ve been given as well. I hope that I’ll never take the simple things for granted because now I’ve experienced firsthand that so many people don’t have the luxuries that I do.