The Domino effect

Sometimes in life you have a moment, it may only last for a second, but it’s a moment of clarity, a moment where everything is put into perspective. One or all five of your sensors are engaged. You see, smell, taste, hear or touch something; and you know your life will never be the same again.

While over looking a village in Bhaktapur after a conversation with a local woman, I have a moment. Even though I have been living in Nepal since the earthquake, I’m still surprised by how much the earthquake has affected its people.

The loss and the destruction is devastating; however what I didn’t realize until now is that even if people have a safe and waterproof house, clothing and medicine they are often lacking food, or the money to buy food.


People and villages who were self-sufficient before the quake; now rely heavily on aid. In these communities they would barter with each other for what they needed. There is never much of an exchange of money. Now, however, much of their land is not usable due to rubble or the crops have been destroyed.

It is too late in the season to be planting new crops. Many people will have to wait for the monsoon to finish, before the next crop can be planted and then wait again until it is ready to be harvested. However, in the meantime, they need to purchase their food…but with what money?

Kids with food

Therefore, my moment isn’t about the devastation I see but rather the realization of how much this earthquake has had a domino effect on the lives of so many. I have such admiration for these people. People who are still able to smile and laugh when there is so much stress. Constantly asking themselves how and where are they going to get their next meal.


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Tahlia Van De Beld is currently working with Metamorphic in Nepal
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