Covid-19 brings about unexpected developments. Without it, Graeme Kent and I would not be talking of working together to help our respective communities in Nepal. Graeme has been at it for a lot longer than I have, and has his own Non For Profit organisation, Aussie Action Abroad.
In Graeme's words: "This is a school where I am seen as one of the founding fathers. It is Shree Mongoladaya Primary school in the Marsyangdi municipality- Lamjung district. This shows some of the school community as we have just completed further works on the school to stop water impacting the classrooms. It’s my special school."
I first met Graeme quite a few years ago, when I was starting to get involved with helping Lura’s women achieve literacy. We met at a cafe in his home town, the picturesque Buninyong near Ballarat in Victoria, and he was very generous with his advice. I did not want to go the NFP way on my own, and managed to help my community of Lura by fundraising through my website.
Then in 2011, Rinji died. Our beautiful, dear friend Rinji Nurbu Sherpa, who had been to Bodnath Stupa to do his early morning kora, and was clipped by a car as he was leaving. I spent the afternoon crying and drawing a picture for Rinji Dai. Graeme flew over for the funeral-puja, and later gave me a dvd of it. Which I have not had the heart to watch yet.
Rinji cleaning the family altar at his Dorphu Bazaar house, where I visited and stayed in 2009 and 2010.
When I needed a plethora of templates for new trips to Nepal, it was Graeme I turned to again and recently, Graeme who said, hey, how about we work together? Graeme came over a few weeks back, we went walkie talkie at Mount Arapiles, as you do, and I made the most out of our meeting, getting to know the man and his work better in a way I could share with everyone. So here it is, What to Do Baje, le podcast! (*)
(*) “What to do? Ke garne?” is a very often used expression in Nepal, preferably accompanied by a head wobble, a la Indian. Baje means grandfather in Nepali, an honorific as well as a family term, and one Graeme wears proudly and gratefully.
Graeme Kent O.A.M. and his girls at Government House in 2017. From left to right: Marilyn, Emma, Narelle, Sarah and Baje.
Thank you my mob for your continued support and inspiration! Anne T, Anne C, Barbara, Cathy, Dorothy, Gwen, Iona, Julia, Jett, Margaret, Patricia, Milton, Sue, Heather, Tom, Valerie and Veronique, big hugs and love to each one of you! Just like when I climbed Everest, it is feeling the love behind me that keeps me going with this 'Adventures in Life' page!
You can buy or gift my ebook "The Wind in my Hair" HERE