Jon Crispin's Notebook

Dadelhura to Sanphebagar

Posted in Travel, Uncategorized by joncrispin on 09/07/2016

Nepal / Visit to Bardadevi V.D.C. School

One of the things I like best about this site is the immediacy of being able to share images. It is always a bit difficult for me to put up a post if more than a few days have passed since I took the photographs.

Nepal / Visit to Bardadevi V.D.C. School

But I have been very busy editing the photos that I took for World Education, and I have had a bit of a hard time getting back into a routine since we returned.  Fortunately I made fairly good notes while we were in the Western Hills. / Before we left Kathmandu, I looked up Achham on the internet and came across this Wikipedia entry.  I was a bit baffled by the  phrase “sporting a non-functional domestic airport”.  That is it in the photo above.  Apparently it is non-functional because the Maoists blew up the control tower during the recent conflict.

Nepal / Visit to Bardadevi V.D.C. School

Here is a view of the Seti River.  At that point of the trip, the monsoon hadn’t really kicked in so the rivers were still a bit dry.

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I spent a lot of time shooting out the front window of the car since we had a lot of ground to cover to get to the first school.

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I felt guilty asking the driver to stop, but the scenery was so exotic that I couldn’t resist shooting as we drove.

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It had started to rain as we got closer to Achham and the roads became interesting.

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There was a lot of water running down the hillsides which made driving a bit hazardous.

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At one point we ended up in a line of cars and busses that were stopped by this slide.  But a front-end loader was just finishing up clearing up the debris and we didn’t have to wait long.

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That’s Nanda Ram, the driver, holding the umbrella with Jagdish on his right and Sukha Ratna on his left.  Jagdish is the early grade maths guy and Sukha Ratna works on reading and did an amazing job organizing the trip.  Cris and I first met Nanda Ram when we were in Nepal in 1992 just after he had started driving for World Education.  He is amazing behind the wheel and such a lovely fellow.

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It was really interesting how quickly the rains started.  We would be climbing up one side of a hill with blue skies and as we would start our descent into a valley it would be foggy and rainy.20160619,1791

Here is a footbridge over the Budhi Ganga.

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We stopped in this town for a bite to eat (I think it might be Doti).  More dal bhat if I recall correctly.

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Since we had had such a long drive to get to the first school, the students had left for the day, but the World Ed staff met with a large group of teachers and administrators to talk about the Early Grade Reading / Maths project.  Every school we visited gave us flowers and  put tikas on our foreheads.  It is such a nice way to be welcomed.

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Here’s Cris with some of the teachers from the Saraswoti Higher Secondary School in Bardadevi V.D.C. (Village Development Committee).

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And here’s Mamta Joshi who teaches at the school.

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Here’s a group shot of the World Ed staff with teachers and administrators after the meeting.  That’s a goat in the background.

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Darrell Earnest is UMASS faculty member who is working on the early grade math part of the project.  He was a fantastic travel partner and he and Cris really had a ton of fun working together.

Thanks for following along.  More soon.

Camp Hope / Kathmandu

Posted in Travel, Uncategorized by joncrispin on 25/06/2016

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

Last week I went to another temporary housing site in Kathmandu.  This one though is very likely to be temporary.  It is supported by the Dwarika Foundation and I was told that by autumn the residents should be moving back to their village.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

I was again accompanied by Shanti Thapa Magar who works for World Education Nepal.  She is amazing and helped me so much on all the visits to the Pourakhi projects that I photographed.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

Here is another SEEP class sponsored by Pourakhi.  The fellow on the lower left is Kundun Gurung who is the facilitator  of the class.  He is a great guy who studied for a time in London, and is now back in Nepal teaching.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

These pups and their mother kept wandering into the class.  The students would shoo them away and they would quickly walk around to the other side of the tent and come back in through a different opening.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

I have come to really like the dogs around Kathmandu.  You definitely don’t want to approach them, but sometimes they come up to you to say hi.  This little guy kept smelling my legs.  I’m pretty sure these trousers still had Olive’s scent on them.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

Tea is almost always offered in Nepal.  It is very sweet and always welcome.  I like this little cup.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

This is Kundun on the right with Manju Gurung who is Chairperson of Pourakhi and another facilitator, Sanjin on the left (sorry,  I can’t seem to find his surname in my notes).

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

After the classes, Shanti took me around to some of the tents and introduced me to a few of the residents.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

Bivi Sherpa is a knitter who is making hats to sell.  She gets 100 Rupees per hat and sells them to a dealer who picks them up for resale.  I offered to buy one, but she politely declined, as the buyer has a deal with her to get everything she produces.

After photographing various Pourakhi projects, I have been really thinking about a way to raise some funds for the organization.  They do phenominal work, and are really unique in the services that they provide.  I will speak to the folks at World Education to see if there is any way that they can be a conduit for them, and since I will be coming back here later this year, it is always possible that I can just collect cash, which in many ways is the easiest way to support this type of organization.  I will post an update sometime soon with details.

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

In the taxi on the way back from the camp I was pleased to see that the driver had some of my favorite Hindu gods on the dashboard.  Looks like Krishna, Hanuman, and Ganesh (who is my absolute favorite as he is the remover of obstacles).

Nepal / SEEP classes at Camp Hope

As we were heading back to the World Ed office, Shanti stopped by her house to introduce me to her son.

Huge thanks to Helen Sherpa at World Ed for connecting me with Shanti, and for making arrangements to get me into the camps.

We are flying back to the US late tonight, and I will begin editing the photographs from our trip to Achham.  I hope to get a post up about that trip very soon.  Thanks for following.

Joel Lamstein in NYT

Posted in Music, People, Published work by joncrispin on 28/08/2011

I used to do quite a bit of work for the New York Times.  I started shooting for them when Carlo Mastricolo was one of the assignment editors and I was living in Ithaca.  When I moved to the City, I continued doing freelance work for them and when I ended up in Massachusetts, they still called on me from time to time.  I think the last job I shot for them was James Taylor at his house in the Berkshires.

James Taylor

Yesterday I got an email from Penelope Riseborough at World Education saying that Joel Lamstein was being featured in today’s business section.  The Times used a picture of Joel I took some years ago that I have always liked.  He is an amazing guy and as Cris worked for him for almost 20 years, we have gotten to know him pretty well. / It was nice to see my name in the paper again after all these years.  Here is a link to the article.

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