The Dust

Kathmandu is very dusty. Everything in Kathmandu is dusty (apart from the landlord’s car outside which is being lovingly polished by one of his staff – and lovingly in the sense of keeping his job intact) . It makes walking along roads, combined with bus exhaust fumes, unpleasant. Many people wear face masks like Japanese Tourists are known to do.

In the morning and through the day you’ll see shop keepers with dusters like candyfloss on a stick de-dusting all visible surfaces, beating rugs with sticks and splashing water on the road outside their frontages to keep the dust down on the ground.

And therein lies the problem. The ground is dusty. But it only occurred to me yesterday what the (a) solution would be. And that is to put asphalt or grass over everything. All the potholes would have to be filled, all the side streets covered, all open ground turned into lush bowling greens. Or stop all traffic. Neither are going to happen so its better to enjoy the dust and look forward to blowing your nose in to tissue paper or stepping into the shower at the end of the day or diving into a crystal clear swimming pool at an upmarket hotel.

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