Injection Machine

Sunita Giri 11:05 PM |

I am like most of the people, when it comes to injection. I too get scarred with the sight of needle and will do anything if I can to avoid get injected. But, sometimes we can't avoid the needle piercing our skin with painful way as its a must to save life.

In my vague memory as a young child, I do remember the orange color - it may be the color of burning electric heater  - and then perhaps the health workers are disinfecting the needle on the hot fire before they  gave us injection in on our forearms. Many of my school friends [ from Bal Mandir ] do have that big scars where we got our injection, which bared us for long to flaunt the sleeveless dress during our teen years. That  also remind me how scary it was to get injected in early days. Well, that was 70s era and I was in my early days of school.

Lucky me. It may sound strange but truth is I don't have that scar in my forearms ! Don't ask why, because I am as clueless as you are.

Not being a shy person, I do not hesitate to cry in front of doctors, if I have to get injection or be ashamed to tell him that I get scared to take the injection. Although its very rare in itself.

Once during my college days, I was bitten by a stray dog. Fearing it may be mad dog, I was needed to take rabies injection with its full course. I told the doctor, I am scared to take the injection. He took that feedback and then at the time to inject me he just rubbed the cotton with spirit on my forearms pressing bit hard and then he injected. That small, simple and  inexpensive trick really worked as I did not even felt the pain of needle making the incision into my body.

Of course, not every doctor or nurse is kind enough to be patience with your fear of injection. But, I remember another inject I mean injection machine, when I was young . I was too young to give full description of the disease that had gripped Bal Mandir or the country or the global health at that time. I remember a word at that time, I must have heard it as a reason for that injection. That word was meningitis. May be, we were given that injection to protect us from meningitis.

What I remember very vividly is, that it was not the normal injection tube as we saw as a child or even in use today. Therefore, it tells me that injection machine was under the research phase only. There were white doctors but I don't remember from which country. They made us stayed on lines and then couple of them injected to around 200 children in Bal Mandir in matter of an hour or so.  I think even adult staff were given this injection.

What I remember about this machine is they had to press on the foot pedal to give us a shot and then they were ready to give another shot to another child instantly. Oh yes, they were so nice doctors, as they gave us sweets to engage our small mind before every shot. They would engage us in small talk, like show your tongue, oh it looks so orange and then we would not even know that needle had already made the incision in our skin. They sweet talked into this. That was easily portable injection machine and if I am not mistaken doctors were carrying it without much trouble. But all those memories are really vague.

Its good news that, I do not remember there was any side effects of that injection. Told you I have very bad memory power, but had it been there then there would have been talk of it.

I do not remember it was almost immediately or it was in the following months or after couple of years but after some time there was talk of meningitis like wildfire in school and many school children who attended the school we went which is inside the Bal Mandir premises, falling sick due to this disease. It seemed like this disease once really scared many parents or even doctors here as it spread like epidemic; but we never fell sick to this disease. I also don't remember anyone catching meningitis; even though after taking the injection that perhaps was still under research phase.  I guessed it because of that machine. It was the time when they used to use the same tube to inject another person after injecting one patience. They used to boil needle for disinfection and reuse the same for another patient.

Although, I don't fall sick that easily, but after that I have never ever seen that kind of injection machine in any hospital or clinic here in Nepal not even in English movies.
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Sibling Rivalry

Sunita Giri 11:30 PM |

“I grew up in palace”, he said. I gave him a suspicious look for that statement so, he clarified himself adding, “of course, my immediate circle of friends know about my childhood, but, there are still a bigger circle of people in my contact to whom  I say, I grew up in palace, it really garners huge interest amongst this circle.” He went on saying, “when I also tell them I studied with Dipendra - the diseased prince - that simply adds my value and importance in this circle of society. I get invited to many churches for more speech, because to them I am simply a best deal compared to others, due to my back ground.”

If you are confused a little bit here, who is this person I am acquainted from royal family, please don't be. This bragger is my brother who spent his childhood with me in Bal Mandir. But he is a notorious bragger, who knows how to blow things out of proportion. Oh sorry, for spoiling his image other than that bragging he is very grounded and humble person, a bible teacher and a writer.

You can see the stark difference between him and me, I say I grew up in Bal Mandir and he says he grew up in Palace. Of course, big rooms to stay and big ground to play was also for me as well as for him and others.

As you have already read in my earlier post all kind of talent competitions which used to take place in Bal Mandir just allowed us to explore our hidden talents and shake our uneasiness to take part in some debate as it was practices very early in our life. All those extra classes after school kept us busy when we were young and energetic and had plenty of time to try all the new things.

I was very   average child and even more average student when I was in Bal Mandir but my brother was bright child and student. I never came close to top ten in my class in my whole student life and he never came second in his entire student life.

He not only used to take part actively in debate competition but he used to win the debate also for almost all participation, used to win prizes for singing never failed in any classes like I did. As a big brother he did told me to take part in those debate competition and mine was so bad participation. So, when I wanted to submit my name for the next competition the program in charge suggested me not not due to my poor performance. It killed me but she was right in her one way too, I was not as good as my brother.

He was sent to other children home which is located at Shifal when he was only in fifth grade. I was in Bal Mandir. Shifal was only for boys and this is less controlled compared to Bal Mandir. Besides this is only for the boys, so to maintain discipline was the major issue to the staff. At the same time some staff were too strict to these boys too. I have a very level headed brother. At least I can say this about him others are I am not close with. Oh, I have five brothers and he is the youngest one close to my age and I am the only girl and the youngest of all too.

Despite all those adverse environment, it did not affect him much in his life. At the tender age of fourteen he found peace with life through religion; which he did after changing his religion to christian.  Unlike me he could not finish his schooling, due to financial reason but still he teaches in bible college, and now a star writer. But before that he is a bible teacher for more than 20 years. That is his first and only mission in life.

Its not important today, whether I can dance or not, its also not that important my career as a singer is not secured. I never took part in any drama as an amateur or professional since I left in Bal Mandir. I do not remember taking part in any competition and then winning it. I can dance and won't hesitate sing when I feel like. I may be not the best to do it but there are worst than me who gives me confidence to express myself when I have to do it if need be and doing it has nothing to do with as a profession. All those classes has a lot to do more of increasing our confidence build too, which as a child I never understood.  

He give credit to all those training which we got in Bal Mandir  or his confidence and ability to stand up in the crowd and deliver his speeches. He admits that he is a performer rather than a preacher.

His first book Mystery of Marriage made him the star writer in christian society here in Nepal, because his first book sold more than other writers book.   Its been published more than 8,000 in less than a year.  His first book is creating a new sales record and that is making him busy now, giving speeches in many churches which requires him to visit different part of Nepal.

This is a small figure in big countries but here even big literary writer hardly cross 10,000 in a year for new book so forth publish in a year and this time its published 3,000 is good news for him.

He has been teaching bible since long. By the time he was at the age of his oldest son, who is eighteen now; he had already started teaching bible.  His work put him in bigger spotlight than mine.

After 20 years I don't know how, but my English is better than him. I am college graduate and he is not. In fact, I am the only one in my family, who had been to college and not my brothers. Poor he, he did not find Bernard in his life as I did. Today I am writer and I have more follower in my Facebook which he has not and I get paid for my article better than he earns from his book. I am writing my blog, suddenly I am on front row. when I share all this with him, it sure has power to make me go silent, oh, yes he keeps loud silence in this matter. May be he is wondering how come me who was so average in every way is coming on front row almost alongside him ? Yes, there is no doubt that his line is a lot different and mine is also but now I am now under his shadow.

I love knitting, of course I learn this in Bal Mandir and I am known in my close circle for my this passion and If I made sweaters, this is very womanly thing and that's what girls or women do here and should be happy doing this kind of stuff. This kind of things is OK with almost everyone, but me writing and my voice reaching far and wide than his is some thing do have power to keep him silence. I never thought, I have anything to with sibling rivalry, by age he is closest with mine but still his way and thinking is a whole lot different than mine.

But, still when I see him keeping his silence, I can't help think is this sibling rivalry ? More than that what I remember very vividly is, this never existed when I was young and average and he was a lot smarter than me.

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Sunita Giri 11:23 PM |

Jamara is a vital part of our biggest festival Dashain, which is sown on the first day of ten long day festival. First day is called Ghatasthapana. We start this festival by planting jamara, which will be used on the tenth day of dashain.

As a child this was really big day for me, first day of long holidays and first day of big festival, first day of joy that nothing could give when we don't have to go to school. ‘Purano’ Dijju, as we call her with that kind of odd name. She was the oldest housemother [ not by age but by years she had spent ] in Bal Mandir, so we used to add that old in her calling name.

She was a newar woman by caste, not the kind that our conservative society accepted to do the puja room and allow her to do big days starting puja. But, she is the one who used to plant jamara every year in Bal Mandir and we used to watch her doing so. This process needed watering it every day twice in the morning and evening and at that time there used to be small puja work.

She used to lift each Chinese flowery printed white color bowl that was used to covered jamara and then water it religiously. She used to be so calm and serene, when she used to do this particular puja. She used to lift one by one the bowls and then water it individually and then after that she used to  put the lid again on the jamara. Normally, to get yellowish color jamara, it was must to keep it covered all day long, otherwise the color used to be green which lacked the festive effect in it.

Children were allowed to enter in this room to see while she performed puja, which lasted  a little more than ten minutes every day, which took place in the morning and evening. Each passing day, it used to grow faster and become taller and when she used to lift the lid we always used to go ooh and aah, not knowing how to react to that fast grow and the wonderful color of it which really mesmerized us.

Jamara is normally sown on the fine sand for special effect on it, instead of normal mud that we can get on earth for growing anything. I don't know, the specific reason behind it or why its done so, but its been going on for centuries may be.

Interestingly what I really don't know is, how the adults, who were so conservatives in their thinking about the caste system and the one who should perform puja or not, who should enter in the puja room reacted to this. More than that, did they [ especially the cooks who are mostly brahmins by caste ] accepted it as a prashad or not; did they put it on their head or not ?

I hope, dashain as a whole is festival for children, more than its for adult. Sure they make this easy, better and memorable for children in so many of their efforts and action. And with 200 children around to accept and put that jamara on our head at the big day of dashain, I never paid much attention to the fact whether some adult put that jamara on their head or not ? their number was so small than ours so minority thoughts or feelings may just have vanished in the majority of interest or feelings.

You see being a child is age of innocence and we don't pay much attention to the things that perplex adult or matters most to the adult than child.

It just feels good to be back in my memory lane and being child, that too in the festive seasons like Dashain.

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