Earlier this week, there were two events that brought me close to tears and made my pulse soar to unprecedented heights. One was when I was without my phone in Zurich for about 12 hours and didn't know whether it had been stolen. It is shocking how much stress this caused me and how naked I felt without it. Need to set the alarm. Oh, can't. Want to reach for my phone to check Instagram/Bloglovin/e-mail. Oh, can't. What if my parents or friends want to reach me? Should I have my SIM card blocked right away, or wait? A million of thoughts were going on in my head just because of that bloody little device. Sad, really.
The even bigger stress factor was when I had plumbers come and read the gas concentration in my apartment after the drilled gas pipe had been mended (see my post about that little Saturday morning crisis). After 3 readings they said that they can't give their o.k., which was predictable as in "over 90% of old buildings" the gas pipes are apparently not super tight. I innocently asked what this meant and they said that in addition to having to disconnect the meter right away, I would need to have new pipes installed to all devices, including having to take out my kitchen, have tiles broken off, etc. All the good stuff you want in the apartment you live in. My jaw dropped and I was close to tears. The only silver lining was that I knew I was going to be in Lisbon (with hot water in the hotel) until Sunday night. They left and just as I was about to leave for work they called to ask if I was still at home as their contact from the insurance company had asked them to exclude further factors. Long story short, after tightening some bolts near the gas heater and stove, the values were excellent and I got the o.k. You cannot imagine my relief. Phew!
A few hours later, I got an e-mail from L'Italiana where I was bcc-ed in a request to raise funds for one of her friends, who is Nepali and lost 17 (!) family members in the recent earthquake. Well, replacing your phone and having a mess in your apartment really pales in comparison and even though I don't know the family at all, I immediately donated. If you would like to donate a little even though this is not tax-deductible and you don't know neither my friend nor the afflicted family, this would be incredible. I am pasting some information and the link to the fundraising site below.
In an instant, four generations - seventeen family members including 12 mothers- were killed as their family home collapsed in the earthquake in Kathmandu on April 25, 2015.
In this incomprehensible tragedy, our best friend, Bishnu Man Pradhan, lost his mother, brother, sister, two nieces (age 2 and 4), grandmother, grandfather, sisters-in-law and aunts. Many of those who survived were injured in the aftermath. They were all gathered for a family celebration just like any of our families do each holiday season. They leave behind shattered and grieving husbands, wives, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers and heartbroken friends from all over the world.
Just weeks before the quake, the Pradhans had hoped to bring baby Bishlex to Nepal to meet his grandmother. Now, this will never happen. Instead, the day after the quake, they rushed to return to Kathmandu, amid rubble, aftershocks, and overpacked hospitals, to attend her funeral and to help with the funerals of thirteen other beloved members of their family.
It took nearly all of the young family’s savings to return to Nepal this weekend, and to suspend their life in America. For many years, they have worked hard and sent money home to help their family. Now, they need to provide aid and assistance to those family members who survived this tragedy. Twelve mothers were lost in the collapse. Several young children have been left without a mother or father. Many have been left without a home.
We are asking for your help to provide financial relief to Bishnu, Shruti and their family in this time of extraordinary need. The funds raised will directly aid the Pradhan family as they try to recover from this unthinkable loss. Please help us help them. Be generous and share their story with your friends. And, above all, please keep Bishnu, Shruti and their family in your thoughts and prayers.
Many heartfelt thanks.