Ishwor Shrestha: “For the first time in my life, I felt bad for people who were unknown to me”

Buddhist Stupa

Just before the calamity I was helping my parents with some house work when I felt a mild vertical shaking of the house. I knew immediately what it was. Slowly, I went outside with my family members.

After a few seconds, the shaking pattern changed from vertical to horizontal and with an intensity I had never felt or faced before. I was really scared and everyone around me seemed scared too. Buildings were shaking in such a way that we lost hope that our house would remain standing. I saw houses blow up as if from bomb blasts like I’d seen in the movies. Luckily none of the houses in our village fell down, but most of them had cracks.

It was not my first earthquake, but I was not scared like this in earlier quakes. Not only me, but everyone seemed really scared this time. I never thought that nature could be so scary. That first day, we felt constant strong aftershocks which scared us even more. People started making tents in open areas. Our family and neighbors also built a tent and shared.
That whole day and night we felt the aftershocks constantly.

In the news, we learned that thousands of people had been killed. For the first time in my life, I felt bad for people who were unknown to me. I felt for them as if they were my own.

We still feel the aftershocks at least once a day and I’m praying for God to end them forever. We Nepalese faced this difficult challenge from nature, and I hope and pray that we will never have to face it again.

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