Per previous blog posts, Cameron and Lincoln spent time in Nepal volunteering at an eye clinic in Phaplu with the University of Utah’s Moran Eye Center. The entire trip was led by World Wide Trekking, a Utah-based expedition company, and its Human Outreach Project. The blog now compares Utah city infrastructure to Nepali city infrastructure. Two of the most visible services that Utah cities provide are public safety (police and fire departments) and parks and recreation. Nepali cities also provide such services, though with a different level of service.
Police officers in Utah cities investigate crimes, apprehend criminals, and enforce the law. Same for Nepal, but we saw the most police officers on traffic duty in Kathmandu’s snarled and dusty streets.
Ok, we didn’t actually see any fire stations in Nepal. In Kathmandu, the valley of 3.5 million residents has just four fire engines. By comparison, Murray City has three fire engines to service a city of 46,000 people. In Nepali highland villages, they rely on a volunteer fire fighting force just like many rural Utah communities. Your correspondent does not believe there is sufficient water though…
Your correspondent was pleased to find a city park with a basketball court, complete with courtside seats!
Utah cities have tremendous parks and recreation facilities, from baseball and softball complexes to riverside trails. In Kathmandu, the above dirt patch beside the polluted Bagmati River is a soccer pitch. The Jordan River Parkway, it is not.
Most Utah cities, large and small, have a city park. Ditto, Nepal. Here, the kids are playing soccer in Namche Bazaar, a village of 1,700 people at an elevation of 11,300 feet. Could you play soccer on the summit of Mt. Timpanogos? What a home field advantage!
In Phaplu, the wide area of the main highway doubles as the playing field. You can see the entire playing area, where we played football, soccer, and Frisbee with the wonderful kids.