Travels in Nepal # 67 Rural Life in Southern Nepal
On our ox cart ride through the rural area near Chitwan National Park in southern Nepal we were able to get a close up view of life in the raw. The houses were basic with few facilities, though I did notice quite a few houses had electricity and television. I was somewhat amused to see that, on average, every third or fourth house boasted a sign advertising that the occupants offered both STD and ISD telephone services available.
During the ride we stopped for a while to visit a local historical museum. This gave a very good picture of life in rural Nepal in years gone by and gave a good appreciation of the heritage of the local people. We also saw some well dressed children in their uniforms heading off to the local school. Our guide told us that only the privileged few went to school. Many farmers are not rich; they rent from the wealthy land owners. Only the well to do are able to send their children to school. This is the general picture throughout Nepal; only the well off can afford to send their children to school. This accounts for a literacy rate of about thirty percent, and far less in rural areas.
Most farmers also rely heavily on animals on their small farms. The move the mechanical help, as in the tractor in the photo below, is slowly becoming common. It was the dry season when I was in this area so we didn’t see much being grown in the fields.
Despite the very foggy conditions well into the day, I was able to identify a few more birds during our ox cart ride. Our guide, a professional birding guide, was able to help me greatly in this.
- Rural life in Nepal – taken from my travel journal written during my travels.