By Aniek Jaartsveld

Beginning of August, Ladakh, after five years was again hit by extremely bad weather.

In Nyerma there was leakage in the nun’s rooms. The paint on the outer wall almost completely washed away. The rooms of the guesthouse got wet mostly through the cracks in the wooden frames of the windows that was affected by climatic conditions. There is still fear among the Ladakhi’s of worst weather.

In Shey and Thiksey huge thunderstorms caused a lot of damage and disturbance. Due to predictions of bad weather the next day too, as a precaution workers from Thiksy were housed in the guesthouse. Four in every room. The men were not as clean as most of our usual guests. As a gratitude for the shelter provided they did many odd jobs and fixes at the guesthouse. Hence we forgive them for the mess they created.

To make matters worse our water pump broke. We had to walk far to the pump outside our grounds to collect water. Fortunately, now there is a new pump, expensive but essential. Now that water is at our fingertips again, I realize how easy we have it in the Netherlands.

Now two weeks later we still get messages of remote areas where houses, roads and crops have been wiped out. People literally have no prospects for the future. Three people died. Fortunately, that is less compared to five years ago, but still .... The damages to infrastructure scattered across Ladakh is probably much greater.

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