Everything is the same, yet nothing is the same. A recent adventure to India and Nepal opened my eyes to new cultures and ways of life that in some ways, I'm still computing, if that is even possible. From the constant, claustrophobic presences of stimulus barraging the senses in Delhi to the more laid back labyrinthine streets of Kathmandu, filled with temples and relics of an age not so very long past, if at all, the truth is there to be found.
And the truth is, everywhere is the same. Everywhere is different. And that is what makes the world a beautiful place, something to cherish, something to preserve, and something that will not be here forever.
Modern murals adorn ancient walls in the city of Kathmandu. Temples lay in ruin, thousand year old roofs lying in rubble in squares all over the city, with the towering Himalaya looming just outside the metropolis a reminder of the powerful forces of Mother Earth. It is amazing to see such reminders of contemporary life so near such historic sites. For all the talent that goes into a mural like the one pictured above, a thousand master craftsmen must have been used for just one temple. It is staggering the sheer detail in the pounded metal edifices and delicate stone carving adorning the hundreds of temples throughout the city. If only I had had more than two days to venture into the towns and villages in the surrounding countryside in order to grasp that little bit more of the country.
To me, the region is by far the most impressive of the places I have traveled to thus far in my short life. Cathedrals tower over the cities of Europe and the Inca dominated the Andes with their impressive farming, but for all the imagination that went into those places, I felt closer to these holy places. Pigment still stains the statues brightly in the sunshine and you still have to remove tired shoes and feel the cold stone underfoot.
These are amazing places to visit, if only for a short while. There is an art to living happily, and without perspective, how can you be happy?