Women spent most of their time raising the children. According to Shrestha, the children felt more comfortable with their mothers and aunts. “We were afraid to ask our fathers when we needed something,” he says.


At the time when this photo was taken, women were forbidden from enrolling in nursing programmes. Many SLC graduates would enroll at Patan Multiple Campus in the Humanities stream, most of them majoring in Home Science. The women in this photo belonged to that majority. “We were the smartest ladies of our batch and we were always perfectly dressed in our pink saris,” Gyandu Pandey (third from left) recounts. This picture, taken at Patan’s Purna Studio around 1984, reminds Pandey of her youthful days and her campus life. She and her friends, 2nd-year IA students, were posed by the photographer. “He made us cross our hands for uniformity,” she remembers. Going to campus made Pandey feel very prestigious. She was a studious young woman and was the only child in her family who passed with second division in SLC. Most of her friends had failed the exam. “I don’t know why, but I always wore a gold chain when I went to college. I’d ask my aunt for it – it was hers, but I loved it. The watch probably belongs to my sister or aunt,” she says. “After getting marred immediately after my IA, my life changed. There weren’t many ways of communicating in those days and I lost touch with all of these friends,” Gyanu says with sadness.


Shrestha’s eldest daughter Minaruwa and her best friend Vidya at Purna Studio in Patan. They are wearing the uniforms of the Scouts, which had just been introduced in a few schools in the capital. The women in the photo remain close friends even today.