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National Geographic Exploration
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Photo: porters carry a car through the rugged countryside in Nepal

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Even without roads, the cars come. In Nepal in 1948, the inexorable march of “progress” took the form of porters carrying cars through the rugged countryside to or from the nation’s only city with modern roads, Kathmandu. Wrote S. Dillon Ripley at the time, “In recorded history perhaps 200 Europeans and 30 Americans have been invited by the rulers or by the British Resident to visit this remote capital.”

Photograph by Volkmar Wentzel
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