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What to expect when moving to Nepal

Hello everyone,

Is there anything you wish you had known before moving to Nepal? For example, transportation, internet speeds, types of housing, aspects of the culture or social life.

In your opinion, what's the most important thing to know about Nepal?

When would you recommend someone should begin planning their move to Nepal?

What were the most helpful ways you found to get organised? For example, did you use a checklist, were there any particularly useful websites or apps?

What advice would you give to future expats preparing to move to Nepal?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

If as I must assume, we are talking about foreigners intending to move to Nepal, the very first point to clarify is: for how long? Stays limited to no more than five months' in Nepal in any one calendar year (read Tourist Visa?) Or longer, like 6-12 months (read Business Visa?) or 12 months or longer (read Residential Visa?). This critical determining VISA question - KEY factor in considering any move to Nepal is well explained by jl1234 on Expat right here with the most useful and detailed information he provided readers on July 22, 2017 under topic of "Retiring In Nepal". Retirement or no retirement, the point here is that unless the foreign applicant can get assurances he/she will be able to obtain the right type of visa corresponding to applicants needs and expectations, the move to Nepal remains a moot point. Visas is the pre-requisite to any move/planning in Nepal.
After that, if readers want to know more about all these other things such as transportation, utilities, types of housing in/out of city, restaurants, sports and leisure, childcare, clothing and shoes and practical information on rental costs, depending on whether the person/persons want to live in city or outside of city, etc, I would refer them to:

https://www.numbeo.com/quality-of-life/ … ntry=Nepal

Worth noting that in their section "quality of life", Numbeo gives a score of 89.04 out of possible 200 (max) to Nepal (SEE BELOW) and a lower one of 73.93 I believe to Kathmandu/Kathmandu valley.
On inside pages, readers can even find a section where as of August 2017, this site will state, for example, that if - say - a family of 4 were to come and live today in Kathmandu in-city, that family's monthly costs would presently amount to 1061.33 Euros per month, plus the rent. After the monthly rent is factored in - they mention a figure of 26,500 Nrs - or 219 Euros currently, the grand monthly total will then come to a sum of 1280 Euros or $1,509.00 according to their detailed information, at current exchange rate which readers can verify.
The rental they cite for living outside of city is somewhat lower, as would be expected.  Similarly, costs for one person only will be lower, as they mention.
The highlights of that Numbeo information on their country page (Nepal as a whole) are the following, based on maximum/highest score of 200:
PURCHASING POWER INDEX:                    23.30    very low         
SAFETY INDEX:                                             63.34    high
HEALTH CARE INDEX:                                 58.71    moderate
CLIMATE INDEX:                                          92.11    very high
COST OF LIVING INDEX:                             33.12    very low
PROPERTY PRICE TO INCOME RATIO       21.67     very high
TRAFFIC COMMUTE TIME INDEX              42.09    moderate
POLLUTION INDEX                                      85.22    very high

QUALITY OF LIFE INDEX IN NEPAL        89.04    moderate

But for those who are interested, many detailed prices for each and every item under the sun are provided in same site, covering everything from vegetables to transportation, taxis, and much more.

As for planning, I find it is difficult if not impossible to plan anything here really, because things always seem to turn out differently from what you expected them to be, which  in turn explains why Nepal is such an irresistible great Adventure!! (I never even bothered to do "checklist" for that reason!) How to plan?

Good information from Monica. In all the websites I visited before coming to Nepal, like she points out that same all-important question keeps popping up, namely: Can you obtain the necessary Visa or Work Permit, before moving to another country, ...Nepal or anywhere really? If not, what's the point or at least a re-think?
Other typical questions these sites raise in a long list of questions, and among them:
- Will you have  health care coverage in that country you move to?
- Can you rely on local healthcare service once there?
- How long are you prepared to be away?
- Can you speak the local language?       
- (Perhaps more importantly they say) ..Will you embrace the local experience and keep a positive outlook, no matter what surprises await you?
- Do you know how much it will cost you to live in the country you think you want to go to?
In the website  www.thewanderlanders.com/25-things-you- … r-country/
they list 25 points they think people should consider prior to moving to another country.
Question of cost, personally I am inclined to agree with that USD1,500.00 per month figure that was quoted as being applicable to Nepal, so we are talking USD18,000.00 annually. But then, if a couple has, say, one young school age child - and this was pointed out in Expat last year because I read it there - that additional parental cost of sending him/her to a really good school like the British Secondary School in Kathmandu for the first/initial year, will alone cost another USD18,000.00 - doubling the required budget to USD36,000.00
The home away from home in Nepal has to be a rented place, as was correctly pointed for the good reason that foreigners are not authorized to purchase. On the other hand, I have every reason to believe they could purchase a car if they wanted to with the right kind of Visa. All I know is that prices of new automobiles here in Nepal are very high because of import duties and/or taxes on virtually all transportation vehicles.

For a single person, it's very cheap to live in Nepal barring any health issues. I lived in a very nice furnished apt. in Pokhara for $~200USD a month all included. Make sure you bargain for all included. Living expenses were less than $100 a month but i dont eat out or drink beer. The only difficulty is finging a place that is quiet in town. There is construction going on almost everywhere. I did find a quiet nook in Lakeside though.

Expect nice walks, beautiful lake and mountain views, cows in the road that would love a leaf of lettuce or two and, of course, never ending honking on street and sidewalk.

Points well made about Nepal being cheaper, barring any health issues.  Equally true that with so much construction going on in the big cities, dust, noise, honking like you say, those are the very reasons why I try really hard to spend most of my time in the villages or in the mountains! I love the country.
On costs, unfortunately Numbeo provides no data for Pokhara, but they do give comparative monthly cost of living for a single person in Kathmandu which they say is presently USD350.69, without rent. When rent is added (after conversion of both their euro and rupee figures), their monthly total cost of living figure in Kathmandu for that one person comes to USD487.70
But the point remains that for a couple or a couple with one or more children to educate who might wish to move to Nepal on a more permanent basis, that family of say 3-4 might have no alternative but to find the best schools, the best hospitals, the best doctors, the best shopping facilities and the rest of it, ONLY in Kathmandu and all of that comes at a price, with the kind of figures previously cited.
One major point remains: sorting out the Visa question, which is where the crunch comes, especially when people intend to move to Nepal expecting to live here for 12 consecutive months, and they find they are not even allowed to spend 6 consecutive months in any one calendar year. More simply put: what kind of Visa can authorize them to do that? And what about the education of their children in that event? Serious considerations here.

Regarding visa issue, from my experience you can stay in Nepal for 10 months straight before you have to leave. 5 months Aug-Dec and 5 months Jan-May. Yes, for a family, taking a 2 month trip to india every year might be a burden. For a single person or couple it would be a boon i would think.

Hi
I'm new on this forum, I'm coming to nepal pokhara, I have been offered work as a contract pilot training local guys and some tourist work I would assume.

What is it like there I'm quite social guy, fit and while not a party animal I do enjoy a drink.

Any advise will be appreciated I'm a bit concerned

Regards

Some of the things I would like to have known before moving to Kathmandu is "not" the Internet speeds but the Internet itself...or lack thereof. No matter the company, there are constant failures and down-time...constant failures. The Nepalese response, well, it'll come back later or well "it's Nepal." It is this kind of apathetic, lethargic, listless attitude that will forever keep Nepal in the Fifteenth Century.

The same for the corrupt Nepal Electricity Authority and power outages...still. The response, well, we may lose power, but we're still happy. Bulls***. Nepal with at least seven enormous hydro-electric dams and a country still can't deliver 24X7 electricity to its capital city. Are you kidding me? And the Nepalese people put up with it with a shrug and a simple smile; the same shrug and smile you will see one-hundred years from now, along with the intermittent power outages. Their response now..."well, we used to have load-shedding." Oh spare me and stop with the simpleton responses. The roads: Criminal. In the 65 countries I've been in including combat zones, the roads in Kathmandu are criminal. They're the worst I've ever seen in my travels and the worst I've even been in my entire life. They are atrocious. The main...the only artery out of the capital city heading westward is not even fit to drive a trail bike on. Again, to emphasize, the roads are criminal. The road to one of the vacation spots in the entire country, Nagarkot is horrendous. What should be a 20-minute drive to the top takes over 1.5 hours. To a top resort as pushed at the airport and it takes 1.5 hours instead of a 20 minute drive. Nothing wrong with Nepal that a good dose of ten points of I.Q.

The most important thing to know is don't expect "anyone" to do his/her job. They will tell you yes directly to your face and go about their business. And your delivery? It's on the way, be there in twenty minutes.

I've been in 65 countries, lived in and/or visited extensively thirty-five countries and Nepal is at the bottom of the heap.

That said, and the only reason I am here is that it has the Himalayas 90 miles away and that, the people of Nepal cannot screw up. As to visas, the Nepal government only allows for 150 day stay and then the visitors have to leave for 7 months. Does "anyone" in the entire country have a business degree? It's called revenue, Nepal government. Is this government so slow...so thick that it puts a clamp on this visa business? I am confident they purposely want to fail as a country. I can bring money in to my bank accounts, but I can't send out? The banks will give you a credit/debit card, but it is worthless as no one really takes them unless the mo mo shop on the corner will accept them. Your card is good for withdrawing money. That's it, nothing more. How do the people of Nepal even buy an airline ticket? Order online? Cost of living; nice. I didn't come here for the inexpensive living, but no complaints. I spend, I help the economy. A lot. But to the restaurateurs, invest in napkins, real napkins, it's OK, you won't go broke. You'll spend less if people only use one napkin instead of many small ones.

Most of the doctors, eventually, will help you. Particularly the specialists like the dermatologists. But when you go to a general practitioner and the first words out of his mouth are do you meditate, I tell him to get stuff. Yah yah, I spent two years in medical school and know enough that meditating will not get rid of a bacterial infection in my lungs, rather Cipro. You should be prepared to tell your doctor to get stuffed if he leads you with that meditating question.  But doc, all the meditating in the world will not help me with my diarrhoea. Just a word to the wise; expect, in large part, to make WebMD your best friend if you've not had any med school.

Advice to those moving to Nepal; dumb down your expectations and consider yourself living in the 1920s of the United States, and that is a stretch.

I have to agree with your advice. If people are going to move to Nepal, it's best if they come with low expectations and this way, they run less risk of being disappointed.
You talk about Electricity, but does anyone really know when the much needed and long awaited Melanchi Drinking Water Project - a dream of the population of Kathmandu - will be completed? As recently as August 10th last in the HT paper, the Project Manager of that project was quoted as saying that of a 27,6 km tunnel they require, his company had "yet to dig 2.9 km" as he put it. The article goes on to say that this project was started in 2001 -- some 16 years ago, which seems hard to believe...but anything is possible in Nepal!
About the GP generalist doctors you refer to, I was told by my friendly and very competent now retired doctor at Himal - who had no reason to exaggerate anything - that literally 95% of all GP's in Nepal will prescribe things like penicillin or other antibiotics, just to cite one example, without ever performing a blood test on the patient beforehand. Without that test, no way of accurately determining which antibiotic is most suitable, and more importantly determine which ones the patient may be resistant to, etc. I am no doctor but I must admit I find this surprising.
We can only hope that problems will be sorted out, that the country will find an equilibrium and not reach failed state like you seem to indicate, but I admit that together with other expats, we sometimes express doubts among ourselves, with multiple reservations about where the country is heading?  It's all in the hands of Nepal's policymakers.
King Prithvi Narayan Shah, the 18th Century King who unified the country, once described Nepal using these exact words:
                                                    "A DELICATE YAM BETWEEN TWO BOULDERS"

and of course, he was referring to India which is 22 times bigger and China which is 66 times larger, in terms of area.
Time will tell.

Thanks Guys for the reply

Im must say Im a bit concerned about the upcoming trip, but am picking up the issue of water and cleanliness.

Im will be going for a typhoid injection before I leave (04/09/2017) and hope it will go well.

We are on a 6 month rotation and Im hoping to make the best of it.

Beadwindow,
I stayed in Pokhara for 10 months. After the 10, you have to leave for 2 months not 7. You can stay in the country for 150 days per year and the year starts january 1st. Arrive August 1st and stay 5 months and then on January 1st, renew visa for another 5 months. One can continue on the 10 in/ 2 out cycle as long as they dont change the rules.

Until the locals start washing their hands at least once a week, your vaccination is a pretty good idea.

Ha! So true. I rarely ever ate out for that reason. One time i had my food sneezed on right in front of me. But, you have to develope a thicker skin to live there. As I always said to myself when i got ticked off by something, "It's not my country".

He he seems bead is a man I could enjoy a single malt with.

While we are on the subjects of Nepal .......how's the women? I hear from a French pilot who is leaving that it's not happening abd like many things that are scares in Nepal women are on the list 🙁

Right; 150 days full stop. That is, tourist visa. I don't know anything about ten months. My comments pertained to a tourist visa. Last November I was 152 days before leaving and the thieves held me up at the airport. Had to buy an add'l 30 day visa to "leave" the country. They just had to get that 45 dollars from Mr. Westerner. They're all just very bad people. One tried to solicit a bribe from me and I told him to go somewhere and do something to himself knowing the worst he could do is jam me for the $45. Being in the Marine Corps for ten years, I have honed my skills at being very caustic and belittling to deserving people with an even harsher vocabulary.

To a large extent, he is correct. Most women are brainwashed (and all say they are not) and think that if they are 25 and under, they must be pregnant and/or be carrying around two small children in tow. They all claim they're independent until you ask them how many pair of jeans they have or if they live by themselves vis-a-vis living at home. If you find a lady between the age of 25 and 30, you're in luck. After that, they are forever stuck in their brainwashed ways. As for me, I have been lucky and have bumped into ladies who have jobs and a car or scooter. Who actually drink, go out after 7.00 PM, own real clothes and actually eat hamburgers (with COW meat) so I am lucky.

I refer to it as having no social grace. From sneezing out loud, people (men and women (gross)) spitting on the street, talking loudly on the phone or talking loudly in general. They just have no clue. Littering? Forget it. Nepal will always be a living petri dish of filth and litter. They think nothing of peeling the wrapper and dropping it. I might see some moron littering on the streets of New York City once a year; in Kathmandu...once a minute.

Well, true, that is ten months, but you still only stay for 150 days per if my math is correct. In any event, I lucked into an "arrangement" with a very lovely person with a mutually beneficial relationship as it pertains to my staying indefinitely in Kathmandu and her part of the deal...USA long-term and you know what I mean.

Well, true, that is ten months, but you still only stay for 150 days per if my math is correct. In any event, I lucked into an "arrangement" with a very lovely person with a mutually beneficial relationship as it pertains to my staying indefinitely in Kathmandu and her part of the deal...USA long-term and you know what I mean.

Reading your comments Beadwindow, it feels like you are enjoying your life a lot here !

Any feeling about a place/country/city is of course very subjective. Coming in Nepal with western expectations if a course the last thing you wanna do. Common sense, right ?

Yes Nepali people wash their hands (they even take shower and wear clothes). In more than a year living here and eating out almost every day, I have never gotten sick.

Sure you cannot pay with your debit card at the momo shop, sure roads are bad, sure you cannot find all the commodities people have in the west. But wait ... people survive, they even smile and seem happy !!! Awesome. To buy things people pay by cash. Unbelievable.

No loadshedding anymore in Kathmandu valley. Meaning you have electricity 24 hours a day. Terrific.

Corruption ... Am sure politics from the US or Europe could give good lectures on the subject.

And the last time you bought an airline ticket, online with your local bank credit/debit card or tried to transfer money "out" of Nepal. Thought so. Don't worry about me; I have more than covered myself. It's nice to buy with a credit card from time to time as it's not my choice to walk around with a wad of 20-50K every time I leave home. As to showers, you could've fooled me. Corruption; your government is still sitting on $4B USD for earthquake relief. None of it has gone to help any of those affected by  the quake. But hey, you're happy, right?

In the meantime, I'm not sure what your point is, but thanks for your two cents worth.

You mention corruption:  Corruption like a cancer. As long as the dreaded disease affects only one part of the body politic - like one organ - and it can be contained, that's one thing. But if the malignant cancer spreads, that's the end.

I "think" you made my point. Thus Nepal -- a corrupt little nation that will have made no improvement in a hundred years but the board of Nepal Electricity Authority will still be getting money from Exide battery corporation.

I fear you are right. Many people pinned their hopes on the nomination of Sushila Karki when she became Chief Justice of Nepal. Certainly, at that time, her nepalese supporters never made a secret of her taking a strong stance against corruption and this, throughout her one year tenure as Head of Nepal's Justice system and Head of the Supreme Court. But all hopes were dashed in May 2017 when she narrowly escaped being impeached for her views and presumably had no other choice but to retire early in June when she turned 65 anyway.
If we are to believe Aljazeera, this reformer lady "took too tough a stance against corruption and was too aggressive, which annoyed the legislators and politicians alike"
The same source points out that "Nepal has had 9 governments since the end of the civil war in 2006"
Expats who make a decision to move to a foreign country naturally expect to find a situation of reasonably good  "Political Stability" in any place they finally decide to settle in, no?

Update about what foreigners should know before moving here.
Ambitious plans for future expansion of Kathmandu Valley Development have just been officially announced. Authorities are reported to be in first stage of awarding contracts to make that branching out of the capital of Kathmandu possible. Plans call for the creation of four major "smart cities" de facto implying the building of new roads, power plants, water supply networks, schools, and other infrastructure.
The stated objective of this Kathmandu Valley Project is to "ease the population density in Kathmandu downtown".
Of the four main cities in the valley, the first would stretch across the eastern part of the Valley connecting Jorpati, Sankhu, Malpani, Gothatar with beautiful and historic Bhaktapur. Plans are that this one "smart city" will cover, they say, 125,000 ropanies of land, which is the equivalent of 12,500 acres.
The second "smart city" being planned will reach out to Lalitpur Patan area and out toward Bungmati, Khokana and out that way.
Still according to plans for everyone to read in the Press, the second, third and fourth areas will all cover smaller areas, in the order of 10,000 ropanies each. Similarly, planners are saying that no one "smart city" should have a population exceeding 500,000 inhabitants. So taken at face value, these four planned "smart cities" will create housing for a maximum number of  2 million inhabitants.
In 1950, Kathmandu's population was 104,000. Today, in 2017, Kathmandu's population is 1,266,000  inhabitants and if suburbia is counted in, Kathmandu Valley population has an estimated 2 million inhabitants, or more already. 
A clear call and need for greater water and electricity resources. Plans give an indication and foresight that the number of people residing in Kathmandu Valley could very well be expected to progressively increase from present level towards the 3 million mark, at some given point in time. And assuming the planners have got their estimates right,  in terms of future population growth, extrapolated from these announced plans of each "smart city" being able to acccomodate 500,000 inhabitants each - the  projection sends a message that population in Kathmandu Valley could very well double in the future. Time will tell!

Keep Kathmandu. I'll take Pokhara.

Development? In a thousand years.

Haha. Well, "there's" a Twenty-first Century city, Pokhara.  :lol:

You really copy and pasted a lot of this "historical" data which most expats coming here already know. I think the spirit of the request is what to expect from "you" an expat. But, "A clear call and need for greater water and electricity resources" as you write, there is plenty. Plenty of water and plenty of electricity resources. Like the at least 7 hydro-electric dams Nepal has? Or are seven dams not enough for 8 million, most of which don't use electricity anyway? Help us out here.

As recently as April 4, 2017, The Economic Times quoted Nepal Electricity as saying that it would have to import electricity worth Fifteen Billion Rupees from India, to end power cuts in this country.
You are right about everything taking ages in Nepal.
You are also right also, of course, about water resources being available in the country (read still mostly undeveloped). But people in cities and elsewhere need good quality potable drinking water and as you no doubt know, Kathmanduites, have been waiting for the Melanchi Water Project to be completed since 2001 to bring that kind of water to the city. Let's hope that the Melamchi Project doesn't take a 1,000 years to quench peoples' thirst!
"Water, water everywhere, nor any drop to drink".......!!!!!
P.S. On a more serious note, it is estimated that up to 75% of the water supply in Kathmandu today is polluted.

Meanwhile, Nepal has seven or so huge hydro-electric dams. For a country the size of New York, well, it's just not that hard to manage. What makes it difficult is the corrupt government of Nepal and the "short" executives at Nepal Electric Authority. To those morons, it's just not that difficult, boys. Electricity...been around 200 years, midgets; it's just not that difficult. In China, they would take them out on Friday afternoon, blindfold them, and shoot them in the back of the head and bill the family for the trouble and bullet. Execute this short children to send a message and things would change.

But -- The Nepalese have no initiative. The standard response: "Oh, well it's Nepal" (with a sigh or a giggle). It has been that way, it will always be that way. It's just not funny or cute. Nepal is..."was" my dream country. I have been here just over a year. I will be leaving, permanently, next May. Why, because I've had my last interrupted news program of importance. I've had my last Web page edit that wasn't saved, by wiped out by a power failure. I've just had it. I can visit if I want to, but I'm leaving and taking my 50 plus lakhs I spend here annually. Didn't the imbeciles of this country just have the election of all elections? Didn't do much good, eh?

Dennis Tedder

I understand the fact that many of these complaints/issues are factual. I think it's also important to understand that Nepal was forgotten from the time Magellan sailed around the world until Sir Hillary climbed Mt. Everest. It missed the industrial revolution.

When I was a child in California, US I walked to school on a dirt road. In my lifetime I saw it totally develop from little better than Nepal to what it is now. So, maybe a bit of patience could be given to Nepal.

When I see the American politicians voting to end health care for millions because their pockets are lined with bribe money it's hard for me to even begin to compare it to this developing nation. At least it's still illegal here.

We have 5 MBPS WIFI now from broadband and with our battery backup system and solar we haven't had to use rechargeables or candles more than a couple times this past year. Life is pretty good here for me as a lower income retired American than it was back in the US. I eat better and get great health care for pennies on the dollar. I find it 100 times better than being poor in the US and I get plenty of interaction with Westerners because I have a guesthouse and I have a loving Nepali circle of influence here that is much bigger and better than the support system I had in the US, so I miss nothing from the US other than the second-hand stores and maybe Home Depot. It's so cheap to call the US I seem to talk more to my family from here than I did when I lived there.

The most important thing for me is that I matter more here and can do more for my community than I could in the US. Imagine this: I gave someone a very small amount for schooling when I first got here 6 years ago. A few months ago a woman came by with someone to our guesthouse and told me that her sister was doing well now because I helped her. I truly do not remember anything except I remember that I had helped a young woman. You can't even take someone out to lunch for such a lttle bit, yet I helped her so much that she made sure her sister thanked me 5 years later.

I'm happy to help anyone to come to Nepal to live a better, more enriching life. Just send me a PM. People often need a bit of guidance and support.

The USA never "had" "mandatory" health care until 7 years ago. Now, it is imploding and costing twice a much than if there were none and back to the old days of people just walking in (as hospitals are required to treat now (as of '86)). Nepal ranks well over country number 130 plus as far international rankings. So relax on the healthcare which is going away sooner or later. What are "you" paying annually; oh, not on the ACA, right, Madagascar? You "are" paying for ACA, right? Thought so.

And how long does it take to get to your location, Bhaktapur? And how long would it take to travel the same distance in the USA "or" any other country in the world, save Antarctica? Taking 4-5 hours to go to one of the "hottest" vacation spots in all of Nepal, Pokhara? It's 70 miles. Just under an hour's drive in other countries in the USA. Why? Because the primary road...the "only" road out of the capital of this country is the worst road I have ever been on in my entire life, and I have been to some pretty snarky countries. The roads aren't atrocious; they're criminal. But I'll keep the government out of this missive, but the problem with "this" country "are" the people with their "oh, well it's Nepal." And that is why this place will make "zero" progress even in 200 years with people continuing to wear their traditional dress selling hats.

So did you really come here to "help" people and feel good whilst wearing your cheap tie-died t-shirt or did you come to live on the cheap and this just happened to come to the top of the list? I came solely for the mountains, but even the Himalayas can't keep me here now. Zurich in May, folks. If feeling good about helping out someone who will still die 40 years before their time, then knock yourself out. As for eating better? Where did you eat in the US? You clearly needed to get out more.

Overall, your writing sounds like a California liberal who never contributed much to your social security income and looking to get by on the cheap. As for me, I'm too stuck on 24X7 when I turn on the light. Drinking from a tap even from the nastiest gas station. WiFi 24X7 without fail (instead of getting a "line fell down" from Worldlink). And you miss nothing from the US? Yeah, wish it were legal; would love to see you on truth serum. Do you wear a face mask? Wear one in lovely California? You miss the instant on lights, water (hot and cold) without having to pay some schmuck 5 rupees to deliver your water, you miss walking into the shower without shower shoes (thank goodness I live in a new place). You miss being at any store or grocery store within minutes. C'mon, drop the granny glasses routine.

Anyone looking to get by in Nepal on the cheap, contact the above. Otherwise, read my responses above or contact me. I'll even tell you where to get a very good filet mignon hamburger MADE WITH COW! And please, no lectures on being a vegan or cows are holy; cows...are...FOOD.

I've been to 65 countries and 35 of them extensively. Nepal - worst...place..ever, bar none. Stay out; stay home, you're safer with Freddy Kruger in the attic. Corruption? Nepal government makes the Russian politburo look like children. Wearing their silly little hats in their cheap, dirty suits with yesterday's mo mo sauce on their short ties. Knowing what I know now, I would have committed suicide instead. Or moved to Zurich.

And these things you cite ain't exactly rocket science to fix.

"So did you really come here to "help" people and feel good whilst wearing your cheap tie-died t-shirt or did you come to live on the cheap?"

No, actually I was trying to get to Madagascar to help the people there, but they had a coupe and then I ran out of savings in Europe and had to go to India. Then I had to leave India in 3 months. Thank God for my little widow's pension. You are right that I never really lived my life to make money. When I got to Nepal and saw a glimpse of the Himalayas from the bus window on the arduous bus trip, I cried. It was like coming home.

"If feeling good about helping out someone who will still die 40 years before their time, then knock yourself out. As for eating better? Where did you eat in the US? You clearly needed to get out more."

I worked very hard but never earned enough to buy organic vegetables. My God! When your life is over are you going to regret not having faster internet? I don't care if we all die tomorrow, I will live with enough compassion to help people along the way-wherever I am.

I'm having a richer, happier life than I had in the US. If anyone has a helping, patient attitude and wants to give Nepal a try please feel free to contact me. But if your life is going really well and you can afford organic, non-GMO vegetables picked the same day, a full-time housekeeper who even gives foot massages, a full-time cook who will make anything you like, then you are really blessed and I'd want to stay where I was, too. But my life never was like that and at one point I was the housekeeper. But now that's exactly what my life is like. Everyone is so kind to me I feel like I'm the luckiest person on the planet. Now, I find it hard to pray. All I can say is, 'Thank you, God.'

Personally, I don't suffer from electrical outages and we have broadband WIFI and a dish network for backup. We sit up on the hilltop at Changunarayan temple village and have clean air, gentle breezes, quiet nights and so much more. People come to our village for a night and end up staying for months. I'm not suffering or compromising in any way. I lived in a 1972, single wide mobile home for a time and even lived in the back of a box truck mostly at Walmart parking lots. I've been up and I've been down, but Nepal is a serious upgrade in many ways. I never cared about money, but here in Nepal, I have more than enough to live a better lifestyle than I ever did before and even enough to share. Amazing for a person who never had a stock portfolio, huh?

Beadwindow, come to Changunarayan before you leave Nepal. It will help you to remember why Nepal is so beloved by so many.

I only need to go to Lukla and Everest to know and realise my dream since age ten. But now, even the Himalayas can't keep me here; they just don't outweigh the negatives. This city has single-handedly "crushed" a ten year old boy's dream. Thanks.

With all my research, the drawbacks would never have been uncovered without being here. And I was not beating you up; I am just very direct so people won't wonder what I meant in my statements.

There is not a day that goes by that I'm handed some kind of preventable situation and all I can do is take a deep breath, utter horrendous expletives, shake my head and wait for the change. Today's surprise...a lady popped the top of a Coca Cola, then very fastidiously wiped the top with her almost certainly filthy hand then did the same to the glass. Glad I was wearing a clean T-shirt. Wiped it with her hand. This is a medieval city and health habits are as bad or worse than medieval times.

Spending 28 years on Wall Street in New York City; well, money is a good thing to have...for me. My mind is checked out to Zurich or Capetown. I just have to finish some commitments in business consulting and done and done.

Actually I understand Beadwindow perfectly when he says done is done. Many of my friends originally also came to Nepal with a dream about this country, and many of them have either already left or are thinking hard about leaving. Dream is not reality and the reality of Nepal of 2017 is sadly totally otherwise. To know that, one has to be able to scratch the surface. Things are not what they appear to be, only images.
I agree that those in charge are corrupt and in the lot, you can throw in not only the NEA but also the Justice Dept (which lady Chief Justice S. Karki tried in vain to clean up, only to get the boot for it last May/June) and the TIA airport authorities, Land Registry, you name it.
The Himalayan mountains will always be outstandingly beautiful but here again, like you say, those mountains you can't move just do not outweigh all the negatives of today's Nepal.  Up until the Royal Palace Massacre of 2001, Nepal had long been a one man rule, a type of governing which somehow better seemed to  suit the country. But all that changed abruptly on that sad and regrettable day.
Like a nepali friend of mine said to me just recently, today Nepal doesn't have one King, it has 600 kings - referring of course to the number making up the Constituent Assembly! But then, we can ask: How can 600 kings possibly efficiently rule a country, especially when using money and power, they successively each taking turns, they put self interest ahead of public interest? A tight ship has only one Captain, and too many chiefs spoil the broth. Is this a "democracy" nepali style? or a joke, i.e. a democracy in name only? In democracy, the people come first, or so it is written in the textbooks.
I also agree that zero progress not only characterizes Nepal but I would say that the country is going backwards, not forward. The economic indicators are there to prove it.  And yes, you are right, they seriously lack initiative - and in addition resist change. Economic quasi stagnation, zero development in productivity are the result, with political incompetence thrown in. 
In the wake of those terrible and devastating earthquakes of April 4 and May 12, 2015, with so many people losing their life, hundreds of thousands of homes were destroyed.
Within the last few days, a friend of mine returned from Eastern country, Gelu/Ramchhap area, and told me that finally after 2 1/2 years, the authorities were granting the local people one lakh rupees
(about 800 euros) to rebuild a one family home there. In stage two, provided the foundation of the house is properly re-built in concrete, they will release a second payment of one lakh rupees. Problem this nepali person says is that the cost of the total cost of rebuilding a house on average there is 10 to 12 lakhs. This means that a typical family can hope to recoup 10 to 20% of the cost and this after having waited two and one half years. 
To finance the rest of re-construction, my friend says that the family in question will have to rely on selling livestock/cattle. The reconstruction of their home may take several more years, this man said.
In the wake of those earthquakes, Foreigners and donors from around the world promptly and generously responded by giving billions to Nepal and contributing to the so-called "Prime Minister's Earthquake Relief Fund" - That being so, and I remember because I was a witness of those dramatic events at the time, we can legitimately ask: why did it so long for these reconstruction funds to be disbursed? why in such small proportionate amounts of reconstruction?
Yes, patience will be required, that's for sure.

Well stated, Monica. Yes, this place is going backwards at light speed. And when "any" Nepali is confronted with "anything" negative, instead of saying, "yes, you're right" you still get an excuse -- which can be shot down in seconds. Only armed and violent takeover by citizens have won against governments like this in earlier times and countries. Short of that, Nepal will always be in the 1850s, with "water" instead of paper (it does 'not' clean (nor dry for that matter to be graphic)), napkin cutbacks (yes, trivial), water from bottles, power outages, etc. Here, the Nepali 'excuse" is "well, just get a battery backup." Wrong; that is "not" the answer; it is pressure on a gaping wound. The answer is for the country to provide 24X7 electricity to it's capital city.

As I've said before, it ain't rocket science, it's been around 200 years. The final straw the other day was, again, loss of power for four ****** hours, and when I went to dinner, the lady wiped the top of the coke bottle with her hand by gripping it, and again, rimmed the top of the glass with her thumb and forefinger. How ******g filthy. These people "are" stupid, they are beyond redemption, they are too dumb to learn. And if taught, they would revert to their old dirty ways. The only good thing is that most of the women don't stink. I've been in combat zones where I could get cold cokes, hot food, clean stainless and dinnerware, and pure water from taps. Again, ain't rocket science.

Oh, but here I go again. I've mentally checked out so I shouldn't care, and off to the "civilised" city of Zurich.

As they say in Italy, basta per oggi.

It costs nothing to be civilised.

I know what you are saying. Nepalis are so very proud, so incredibly full of pride, the thought that they might be wrong never even enters their mind. Blind to criticism really. With such people who are so oblivious and blissfully unaware of their own state of mind, nothing a westerner can do. And when we push them a bit too much and try to pin them down, we cross their red line. Result is they short circuit and go bananas.
For them, it is simple:  there are the only ones who hold the truth.
What to do? Nothing except for us to exit.
Not easy people to educate, that's for sure.

Yes, what to do, indeed. Exit...exit to Zurich. I lose a little access to the mountains...they lose 20 - 40 lakhs of my annual money spent here. I'm certainly not going to crater their economy, but there will be a significant number of restaurants and mom and pop stores who will not benefit from that cash infusion. I am generous when I spend, but in the end, it's like pissing in the ocean and waiting on a tidal wave.

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