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|From Intention to Action - Page 2|
"Her name is Inu," he continued. "She will be disappeared next."
"Disappeared? You mean she'll be leaving the village?"
The principal nodded, then started to turn away.
"Hazur," I said, using the Nepali words to beg his pardon, "I'm curious. Yasko kati ho? How much would it cost? How much for Inu to stay in school?"
"Oh, it is very much, Sir. She must have a winter uniform, and of course a spring uniform. After the fifth year, all children must pay school fees. Then there are the books and supplies she must have. Plus dal bhat." The latter referred to the food staple: rice with watery lentils.
"And how much will all that cost?"
"Very much, Sir. That is almost 3,000 rupees."
I did the mental calculations in my head. "3,000 rupees? That's like $50."
The principal nodded.
"You mean for $50, Inu could stay in school instead of. . . ." I struggled with how to best express this. "For $50 per year, Inu could stay in school?"
"Yes, I suppose that is so," he said.
Without thinking this through, without considering the implications of my gesture, I reached into my pocket, peeled off three 1,000-rupee notes, and said, "Here, this is for Inu's school. She stays in school."
That was seven years ago.