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Wander & enjoy the diversity...it feeds your soul “What is more miraculous than the moment?” Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hanh

Arrived in Kathmandu!

NEPAL | Friday, 19 October 2007 | Views [1196] | Comments [13]

Kirsten & I in the village of Patan - close to Kathmandu

Kirsten & I in the village of Patan - close to Kathmandu

OK!!!  I am actually here in KATHMANDU!!!  After a nearly disastrous event in the Lufthansa plane bathroom – I accidentally bumped the toilet paper holder (with my foot) into the toilet just seconds before it would have been sucked into never-never land of the holding tank.  I rescued the holder from the toilet bowl & tried to put it back together.  This was all to prevent my fingers from becoming dirty by not touching the flush handle!  Then I had to try & sterilize my hands from the toilet bowl!  Yikes!  Off to a bad start!

The other event I had NOT planned for – was that I had carefully packed a carry-on with all my "essentials' & made the mistake of asking it to be weighed – thought I was doing the "right" thing, but….it turns out I was 2 kg overweight & they HAD to check my ESSENTIAL items – those items I was sure I couldn't live without, if the baggage was lost!  So I was praying the whole time – from Portland to Frankfurt to Delhi!  As bag after bag circled around, I thanked my guardian angels that both bags arrived safely!  Lesson - DON"T ask to have your bag weighed - just bring it on the plane like the rest of the passengers did with their HUGE bags!

Although there were long waits for each plane, I arrived safely in Kathmandu on Friday, 10/19 (2 days after leaving Ptld) after being up for over 48 hours.  What a relief to see my smiling, Annapurna mountain trekker-daughter, Kirsten, standing outside the building waiting with the hotel car! YEAH!!!!!

Our hotel, Hotel Ganesh Himal, is quite nice for $12/night – shower in room, balcony outside our rooms on every floor, restaurant with room service, nice gardens with tables, travel service & laundry service (temporarily not available because of the 2 week festival, called Dasain – celebrating the goddess, Durga, overcoming the forces of evil.  Or something like that???  The following day we saw goats & small water buffalo, having been slaughtered (their heads are swiftly cut off with a sword, & they were being loaded up in rickshaws or carts – to be taken to be barbecued!  I have pretty much gone back to my vegetarianism – except for occasional miniscule pieces of chicken in rice, soup, or with vegetables! 

Sunday, we climbed a trillion steps to the top of the monkey temple after about a 45-minute walk through town.  The monkeys were playing about on the way up, but got interested in my little bee hanging off my backpack – Kirst was in-between me & the monkey & he started to go after her!  We jumped out of the way & another guy yelled at the monkey to go away!   We avoided any more monkey attacks, but got some great shots of little baby monkeys with their moms!  AND of course the views from the top were incredible!  That was the morning activity!  The afternoon we spent relaxing in beautiful gardens & playing cards!

Monday we hired Gyanu, Kirsten's Annapurna trekking guide, to negotiate taxis (quite an art considering their are blocks-long gas lines of taxis waiting for gas, increased gas prices, & the festival) & show us around 2 cities, Bhaktapur & Patan. Lots of temples & people - celebrating their festival & enjoying all their rituals.  We seem to be able to find great roof-top restaurants in each of these places for cool lemon-soda drinks, simple meals & photo opportunities!

It is Tues today - Kirst & I have just had a nice breakfast with toast, eggs, fried bananna, coffee & potatoes, tomato for $1.50.  This needs to be our internet & packing day as we head for the mountains, THE LAST RESORT, up by the Chinese border of Tibet, tomorrow - have to be at the rafting company by 5:45am.  We will sleep in what looks like really nice tents!  Will go rafting on the Bhoti Kosi river on Sat & Sun - the easier upper river on Sat - come back to the resort that night to sleep & then do the lower more difficult - grades 4+ on Sun.  They drive us back to Kathmandu that night.  Then we have 3 days to play around until we fly back to Delhi on Nov 1 to meet Chuck.

Although their are inconveniences due to the festival - no resturant service in certain places & certain times, no laundry service (did my own in the tiny bathroom sink last night), BUT their are 1/2 price baked goods after 7pm - delicious! 

Kathmandu is quite an incredible city!  Easier to manage than India was for me - but it may be that since I have experience India, this seems like a nicer, more organized, more cosmopolitan city than what I saw in southern India.  There is any kind of food that you would want - we have had wonderful Thai food, Chinese, English, Indian, & Nepalese! 

SOOOOOO many international trekkers from mostly all over the world - a few US, but not that many.  We have been seeing temples, gardens and sooooo many stalls of beautiful clothes, fabrics, jewelry, etc - I could spend sooooo much $$$ here, but thankfully I have no room to put anything, so I have limited my 1 thing to buy - a marionette from a sweet little village we went to yesterday, using the Nepalese guide that Kirsty used for trekking.  He is really a sweet guy & offered to carry my bag yesterday - really made a difference - even helped me up the stairs at a temple that didn't have any railings - so I knew I would be too dizzy to do it myself!   

Soooo, we head to the mountains tomorrow!  I will continue my blog when I am back in Kathmandu – on the 29th, if we survive the rafting!  I am looking forward to the river – it should be sooooo much fun!

Hopefully, more pictures & stories to come!  TAKE care everyone!  Luv, ann

 

Tags: planes trains & automobiles

 

Comments

1

WOW Ann, You ARE having an incredible time with Kirsten. Everything must be soooo different!!! I wish I was there.
I'll keep on reading your experiences in those so far away country. Love, Tuky

  Tuky Oct 23, 2007 10:06 PM

2

Ann, I love the stories of your adventure and can't wait to hear how the rafting trip when. I wish I were there with you. Glad things seem to be going fairly smoothly. Love, Laurie

  Laurie Oct 23, 2007 11:41 PM

3

What an adventure! I can't wait for the next installment. Watch out for those monkeys they can be vicious.

  Sandra Oct 24, 2007 1:35 AM

4

Sounds like you're having a great time. Hope the rest of your trip goes smoothly!

Derrick

  Derrick Fields Oct 24, 2007 1:35 AM

5

It is great to read about your journey.

Had such a great time seeing you in Pdx.

love, ingrid

  Ingrid Oct 24, 2007 4:04 AM

6

You both just amaze me! I've got an idea for a second (or third) career for you, Ann. After Kirsten is done teaching you the ropes...you can start a "Woman over 50 Tour the World" business. I'll be your first customer! Have fun, be safe & keep writing. Love, Karen

  Karen Oct 24, 2007 6:22 AM

7

A & K - Whoa! What a fantastic journey, and I'm not just talking "travels"! Carpe Diem to the max! Remember to be nice to the monkeys, tho ... they might be kin! Be safe,and we'll keep watching! Love you both, Bobbie & Elliott

  Bobbie and Elliott Oct 24, 2007 12:18 PM

8

Yes, I like that idea of "Women over 50 Tour the World." I am thrilled to hear about your adventures first hand. Blogs are great, aren't they? I admire your love of adventure and travel as well as your gentle spirit. Take care and have a time of your life.
MS

  Molly Oct 25, 2007 6:53 AM

9

Wow, Ann, thanks for sharing about your adventure. It sounds teriffic. Hi to Kirsten and also watch out for drunk wild elephants. I read they had quite a time with rice beer. Take care. Have fun in the rapids. You are braver than I.
Syl

  Sylvia Oct 25, 2007 11:39 AM

10

Wow, Ann!! I love your strong and gentle spirit even more, having experienced you in Guadalajara this summer, and now reading your first hand reactions to the incredible travelling you are doing. This is what we as humans should be doing with our time on this earth--seeing our world, experiencing nature and spending time with other people both new and old.
I'm deep in my graduate school studies in Speech Language Pathology at the U of M. Just had midterms and papers this week. Learning Hindi, too! No time for painting, though. :-(
Our time in Mexico almost seems like another time and world away, but bathed in good feelings, hard work and happy times.
Be well, and take it all in, as it sounds like you are doing anyway!
:-) Judith

  Judith Anthony (back from guadalajara to Minnesota) Oct 26, 2007 1:14 PM

11

Great photo of you and Kirsten. I love your descriptiveness (is that a real word?) The monkey capers do make a person wonder if a barrel of monkeys is fun or meddlesome, though. I'll be eager to hear how the rafting is going. xox Vivian

  Vivian Oct 27, 2007 2:27 PM

12

WOW!! I love reading all your comments! The canyoning & rafting experiences seem so long ago! But I will try to write about the rafting next! And then try to keep up - now that Chuck, Kirst, & I moved into several rooms - a mini-apt, yesterday. It is at the top of the mountains here - gives us a GREAT workout - just going home after teaching! Will post more pictures next week!

  annanderson Nov 8, 2007 3:36 PM

13

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So nice place you have been
Memories that you have

Do come back
I am a lad
from the place that made you glad!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  Ramesh Nov 28, 2007 5:16 AM

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