The Oda Project

Essential healthcare and education - giving Nepali communities in extreme poverty a fighting chance


So I know I have lots to update on, including Badminton Nationals, however, I thought I’d give a quick update on this mornings events! To give some background we had our first annual Kopila Cross Country Run as a part of our Extra-Curricular Championships yesterday morning.  For some great footage from the days events, see this link:  I didn’t realize until after that fact that Maggie was playing the roll of “new-caster” so my commentary is far worse than hers.  Well, in addition to the kids running they convinced Maggie to run with the girls and me to run with the Boys.  The race was just a touch over a mile and the boys winner was Sangeet finishing in 6:19 and me coming in at 6:30. 
Well, last evening while we were eating diner the uncles had a conversation, which somehow boiled down to them agreeing that they could beat me in a race.  The volunteers got word of this conversation a few minutes later, and the trash talking began by the fire.  Many of the Uncles have spent their lives up in the Mountains, and used to be in fantastic shape so I was really unsure of what to expect.  After a long discussion we agreed to meet up this morning for a 3.5 Kilometer run (2.2 miles).  In addition to the uncles and myself the race turned into a Staff & Volunteer challenge with Ben, Kelly, Safira, Maggie, and I running alongside Laxmi Uncle, Krishna Uncle, Gogan Uncle, Prithi Uncle, Shankar Uncle, Don Uncle, Amrika Auntie, Baju Auntie, Kasum Auntie, Basanti Auntie…Needless to say the stakes were pretty high.  We all agreed to meet up early this morning for a 7am start.  It was amazing to see the aunties and the uncles showing up in their sneakers at 6 and 6:30 this morning rearing to go…following some morning banter, Top Uncle went to the halfway point with about 15 kids in the car to make sure we all touched the same spot for the turnaround. A few minutes after the car left, the race was on.  We all gathered by the start line, and the kids gave us the starting countdown…From the onset the uncles took and early lead with Gogan Uncle (the biggest Trash talker of the bunch) racing out to the front.  I made the mistake of starting too fast in yesterday’s run with the kids and learned my mistake...turns out my new strategy paid off, and shortly into the race I started passing a number or the uncles who weren’t used to running any sort of distance.  In addition to myself, the volunteers were all cheering for our girls, seeing as the uncles refused to believe that a girl could beat them in a footrace.  Well, much to our delight we proved everyone wrong and Safira finished third and I won!  I won’t lie I had a bit of an advantage and run most mornings, so my time was 16:10 followed by Krishna uncle at 19:20 and Safira at 19:40!  The finish line was great, and all the kids were waiting by the gate cheering our arrival!  One of my favorite comments of the morning came from Daju who was one of the instigators of the race…He doesn’t speak English, however, when asked what happened he said “What do you expect, I’m 50 years old” in Nepali.  Turns out this run was an eye opener for many of the uncles, who now really want to get in shape and make this competitive run a more regular occurrence. Honestly, this has been one of the most enjoyable mornings to date, and the Aunties and Uncles are still talking about it!

Like I said, I have so much more to update on, and will do so within the next day or two!  Annual day is just around the corner and there is so much here to do in Surkhet!  Merry Almost Christmas to everyone at home, I miss you all.