The Internet and the power have been off more than they have been on lately. And when the power is on, it is usually too low to power my UPS, so I have to make do with an autocut voltage stabilizer, which is a little risky. It works pretty well, actually, but it means I have to stay by it and keep an eye on it constantly when my computer is plugged in. And I have to fiddle with it a lot.

The power situation in Ladakh is probably one of the most unstable in the country. Sometimes the power just goes crazy, from 0 to 300 and back several times in a row. When that happens, it will definitely fry your computer if it isn’t well protected. But sometimes it will be stable for hours on end, lulling you into a false sense of security. If you have a computer or iPad with you, don’t even think of charging it without at least a good surge protector. The first year I was up here, the fluctuations destroyed my MacBook’s hard drive, so now I’m more careful.

There is a new power plant that will supposedly correct the power problems, but it seems that it won’t be operable for at least another year or so.

For some mysterious reason, the Internet cable coming up from Srinagar seems to get broken or cut rather often. Sometimes, we go days without broadband. The satellite connection that is available in a few Internet cafes is so slow it’s hardly useable. And it doesn’t work all the time, either.


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