Ceremony in Dhading District

My first work trip saw me headed northwest of the city, to Dhading District, for a very important ceremony for the Sana Kisan Bikas Bank (my employer). The bank was officially handing over management of one of their banking cooperatives to the various small farmer members. The day saw the majority of the bank’s 600 members gather to celebrate this grassroots micro-finance initiative. The manager of the cooperative, an inspiring 24-year-old woman practically beamed at her 580 women members and 20 male members as everyone gathered under bright skies and fluttering flags to mark the occasion.  The ceremony began with the official handing over of the cooperative and ended with dancing and smiles. Somewhere in between there were a few speeches from the various chairpeople and dignitaries. As the proceedings took place entirely in Nepali, I was allowed to step away from the ceremony for a few minutes to explore the farm next door. I met the woman who lived there and was treated to true Nepali hospitality for the first time since arriving. She had her husband pluck some giant pomelos from the tree in the back yard and proceeded to feed us the sour fruit dipped in salt and chilies until we burst. Even then though, she was not content until she had proudly presented us with hot tea grown right there in her garden. We finally managed to get her to stop feeding us as she modestly insisted that what she had served was not nearly enough and returned to the ceremony in time to see the final songs and dances of the festivities. As far as a work trip goes, it doesn’t get much better than this.

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