Pooped out and hungry as I return home from a hard day of studies, I rush to my room to shed the load of my heavy bag full of textbooks. As I shed my load, the Nepal Electricity Authority sheds its own in order to bridge the gap between the demand and supply of electricity.

There is not enough water to run the hydro-electricity plants to their maximum potential. Monsoon is the only time when Nepal gets plenty of rain. The problem is a familiar one and we have no alternative but to accept the situation. Homework consumes more time and energy just as football and cricket matches and interesting TV soaps are mis-sed in the absence of power. But can anyone do anything about the inconvenience caused to the public, including students like me?

When there is power in the house all the family members get busy with their own stuff. The children watch TV; the home minister is busy in the kitchen while the head of the family goes off to an important business meeting. The point is that all the family members do not have the time to spend quality time together. But when there is load shedding, the father gets all his meetings rescheduled, children are idle and so is the mom. They all wait anxiously for the lights to return. The family even plays antakshari or the parents listen to what the children have to say and share the joys of being a family unit.

Technology has become an integral part of our lives today. We have become dependent on machines and our confidence in manual labour is at an all time low. Instead of writing with fountain pen on a piece of paper, children nowadays use computers to do their homework. Instead of visiting the libraries like the good old days, children are happy to log on to the computer for every piece of information they need in the world. I am not against the use of technology, but while rolling on to the future we should not forget our humble past. Load shedding helps us get an idea of how slow and tedious the lives of our ancestors were.

We all remember the story of the fox that said that the grapes are sour just because he could not reach them after making several attempts. But what else can I do in the dark hours other than to stare at those grapes in my own backyard?