In Kirtipur it is easier to breathe. Easier to move, too. The only things to watch out for are ducks, and women working on the steps of their houses. Living is peaceful here. One can use the entire street to clean one’s daily rice harvest.One might prefer to wash one’s laundry in the front yard instead of the backyard. No passing cars around to soil it as the town is practically vehicle-free. And besides, the daily gossip fix is served, too.Kirtipur is a traditional Newar town. The Newar people are said to be the original inhabitants and owners of what most tourists identify as Nepal: the area around Kathmandu valley and all things Nepalese. “Nepal” is even a variation of the word “newar”.
But, like everything truly Nepalese, the Newari culture is a mishmash of all things lovely. Such as temples and traditions: while one side of Kirtipur is Hindu and the other Buddhist, the town celebrates all festivals together. If only more cultures could live like this: side-by-side, sharing each others’ important moments.(Kirtipur, Nepal; November 2016)