If you are a student in Kathmandu, but a little more broke than your friends are then life can be hard. You step into an eatery and in the middle of the meal the skyrocketing price of potatoes leaves you scared if you can pay for the samosa you are eating or not. The bus fare is Rs 7 and you feel rich if you have Rs 10 in your pocket. When eating out becomes a luxury then you can sure figure out that entertainment costs you an arm and a leg! Want to watch a good movie? Then there are two options: either go to Jai Nepal or Kumari. A poor student wouldn’t even think of entering the premises of these theatres I know but then they are where they show good movies. Whether it is Die Hard 4.0 or Transformers or the Bourne Ultimatum that’s where you get to see them. Wondering about the price? Its Rs 100 in the Front Stall of Jai Nepal and Rs 140 for the same place in Kumari. I don’t know the price of the Balcony tickets as I have never been there myself. And I admit watching movies in those well-conditioned halls for me at least is doing things that are beyond my capacity. The Quest Entertainment guys have rather found a good way to earn money these days. What they do is, put the Hollywood movies in Kumari only (in recent days) which means a tough existence for Rs 10 Filthy Rich Folks!
But there’s a way out. Yupee! Its is Gurukul (the drama theatre) in Maitidevi. The ticket prices are Rs 50 for everyone and discounted price Rs 25 for students who prove it by showing their identity cards. Rs 25!!! Such quality performances at such an affordable price are something NO ONE should miss. That’s what I call a Student Friendly Entertainment Policy. I have been there thrice. First I watched “Tara Baji Lai Lai” which was an enthralling experience. Well, the first timers will be awed and you can always figure them out with their “Waaaaaaahs” as the drama unfolds. The second time I watched “ Putaliko Ghar” ( Doll’s House) and just the latest Gurukul experience was “ Nyaya Premi” ( Les Justice).
Nyaya Premi drew quite a huge audience to Gurukul as two famous personalities namely Dil Bhusan Pathak ( a news anchor in Kantipur Television in the past) and documentary maker alongside Sanjeev Upreti, lecturer at the Tribhuwan University acted in it. I watched the drama on the last day of the Show and it was one helluva experience. I think both the popular personalities did justice to their character. Though most people would disagree with me I thought Sanjeev Upreti did a great job. He looked confused and yet committed just as and when the character demands the expressions. He played the role of a revolutionary who kills the Prince and is a romantic at the same time.
However the experience after the show was the most memorable one. Let me begin by explaining one drawback of the Dramas performed in Gurukul. The Shows start at 5:30pm. Experience tells me that it is hard to get a vehicle back home even from Purano-buspark after 7:30 in the evening. Therefore going to the drama shows is foreseeing some kind of adventure. So, let me get back to my experience. I had to go to watch the drama alone as my sister had already seen it with her friends. It’s not fun to go out on your own so the time before the show was boring. Later I realized going out on your own is beneficial. I will explain why? The drama got over and I dashed to catch one of the last vehicles back home. Well, Gurukul is in Maiti Devi and I had to get to Bagbazar or Purano Buspark to get the bus. As I am a passionate walker as well as a perpetual broke I try to cut my expenses by walking. I did the same i.e. walked as fast as I could to get to the bus stop. But as all pedestrians know, the road only grows longer when you are in a hurry. I was puffing and panting yet getting late. Luckily I had Rs 20 so I got on a blue micro just near Dillibazar. The micro took me to Ratnapark when I had to get off at Bagbazar. So I ran, ran to Bagbazar to see a micro with “Express” written on it. The conductor told me that it wouldn’t stop at my destination. There were no other buses in sight. So I ran, ran like crazy, ran like I never have in my life only to stop to take in some more air and go “Mommy, maren mata!” The last bus was leaving and I got in thanking that unseen Presence once again. So, did you get why I said it’s good to be alone. It’s because you can run, run like nuts and not have to worry about your companion. It’s easier that way. Moreover expecting someone to run with you, someone who would willingly do that, are rare people who are hard to find. Hmm I haven’t found that myself. Lucky Hayah, she is TAKEN 🙂
Talking about the entertainment options in Kathmandu. The recent Film South Asia 2007 was a good thing to happen too. The documentaries were priced at Rs 30 which was welcome, or not welcome the debate continues. Still there are a lot of dimensions to such kind of screenings by the Big Media Houses, Himal in this case. Who is the target audience? The expatriates, foreigners in Kathmandu or the upper middle class English speaking Nepalis only….going there gave me a lot of food for thought which will be mentioned in another entry in my blog may be 😉 ha ha ha
Till then I wish you all a Very Happy Bijaya Dashami!The festival and the beautiful weather should provide enough entertainment to worry of the options available. Hoina ta??
Have a Blast!