Recounting the Pestalozzi Days – Parikshit Chalise

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When I left home at 9 to study in Budhanilkantha School, diversity meant my mother and father not being able to negotiate on a decision. In the boarding school of a thousand people, I was exposed to people from all over Nepal. At first, I hated to be one of a kind. The adjustment in this diverse family took a lot of time. However, here, I learned that every problem came with a solution. I yearned and thrived for accomplishments and ended up with achievements to be cherished. The final years in this school are among the best years of my life.

I left home again, at 16, to go to Pestalozzi; the longest travel of my life and my first ever plane ride. The first day I arrived in Pestalozzi, my roommate from Uganda cooked noodles for me.  Blimey, that was the most disgusting stuff I had ever put in my mouth- a gallon of water and no salt! The next week I cooked for him, the same horrible reaction erupted off him. “You put the whole world in your noodles,” he fired. I loved it spicy and he loved it plain. In Pestalozzi, I learned to accept. We hated each other’s noodles, but then, we both supported Lionel Messi. In Pestalozzi, I learned the similarities within diversity.

Parikshit Chalise

The short part of my life in the United Kingdom exposed me to multitudes of learning opportunities and experiences. Talking to my friends of two extreme shades at the same time was an enriching global experience- like traveling two hemispheres at one sitting. When I had a share of Pakoda from India and Nshima from Zambia together with my own Dal from Nepal, it was perfect. At Pestalozzi, I learned to embrace the diversity that has allowed me to envision beyond my general acquaintances. I learned to think wide and see wide. Pestalozzi, every day, taught me to struggle more and achieve more. Never had I ever imagined that I would be finding such utmost bliss in a place where nobody could even say my name correctly. Towards the end of our two years in Pestalozzi, my Ugandan mate would eat noodles I cooked, and I did the same. It was not because of our modest sympathy to each other but because we had learned to enjoy it.

By Parikshit Chalise

The writer won the Pestalozzi Foundation Scholarship to study A-levels in the UK. He currently works as a tutor at Bloom Nepal School and is a member of Answer team at collegesodhpuch.com.

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