Three years ago today at 11:56 I walked out of a cafe in Kathmandu. Myself, Laura, Shelby and Simon had just had brunch and we were on our way to a music festival. As we walked out of the cafe a low rumbling started and the entire world started to shake.

Things that I trusted and believed as fact were challenged as the tarred street in front of us rippled like a hand towel blowing in the breeze on a washing line. The three-storey building we were in started to move and vibrate in the same way something like an electric toothbrush moves. Buildings aren’t supposed to move like that.

That day, and in the weeks, and aftershocks that followed 9,000 people died in the 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Nepal. Looking back, I realise that something changed inside me when I experienced something that could have ended my time on this planet. I gained perspective when, in the aftermath, we got the opportunity to engage with a community that already had so little, and despite being faced with further adversity, all we saw was hope and resilience. To this day, I try to use this perspective to give context to the things in my life that I worry about. Is this really worth stressing over?

I would obviously never wish something like this to happen again, however, I know that this event has been a defining moment in my life and that the friends and others affected by the quake on 425 have been reshaped in a similar way.

Make every day that you’re alive as amazing as you can, you never know when something like an earthquake or falling coconut means that you don’t make it home for dinner tonight.

In the months following the earthquake, I had the privilege of working with some amazing people on a project that collected photographs submitted by over 100 talented photographers. We used these images and produced a photo book that showcased the events of 425 into four sections. “Aftermath”, “Aid”, “Resilience” and “The Beauty Remains”. The project raised over $5,000 for ongoing relief work in Nepal and the images meant that the event on 25 April 2015 in Nepal is never forgotten. Below is a link to a free PDF copy of the book. Please feel free to download and share this link to honour the beautiful people of Nepal.

 

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