So one week in and I’m desperately trying to remember people’s names. This is a long standing issue I have, this ‘lethonomia’ as it’s technically called (okay so I googled it…) Usually I can remember lots of details about people on first meeting, except their name; literally 2 minutes after they’ve told me it – terrible!
So imagine this challenge for a lethonomic individual; first day in the office I meet: Project director, now I have seen his name written down before so pretty confident on that one, Project co-ordinator – got it, security guy – still tracking, HR – had to repeat and write down but still with it. Whilst I’m beginning to feel like I’ve nailed it with my repetition and visualisation tactics I’m actually teetering on a precipice, as my tour of the office commences. The office that has 90+ people! Nepali after Nepali, all with longer and harder for me to comprehend names introduces themselves as we go from floor to floor, department to department and my mind is swimming. Suddenly my ability to be able to even hear names let alone remember them is unravelling fast. As I stare blankly my downfall is complete. Lesson one…know your limitations!
Despite my naming challenges, the team have been very welcoming and kind. The sense of community here is amazing, with people every day helping me get lunch and then sharing their food with me (as they do with each other) and inviting me to play futsal (5 aside). We often have lunch sitting on the roof terrace overlooking Kathmandu….as you can see, for a city, the view is beautiful. Oh and it rains quite a lot too….proper heavy monsoon rain – I’m learning when to duck under cover and just wait.
Everyone I have met seems passionate about what they’re doing and it’s great to see the effort that CARE has gone to in creating a diverse office, with empowered women who want to empower others. I’m looking forward to seeing how the project is impacting the lives of poor, socially excluded and vulnerable women in practice as I’m heading out on a field visit to the Far West region next week.