One year and counting!!!!
Oct 8, 2007
After crossing into Nepal, we spent the first few days in Kathmandu chilling and recovering from our crazy Tibet travels. We stayed in the Thamel section of the city which is the main touristy area and found an adorable cheap guesthouse to park ourselves.
We spent those first lazy days taking care of our India visa and just walking around. When we finally decided to embrace tourism, we were trying to make our way to the Boudhanath Stupa via taxi and found, Roberta and Leila, another couple of fellow travelers looking to do the same thing. The Stupa was huge, the biggest we've ever seen, and it was beautiful with hundreds of prayer flags hanging on it. Post-Stupa, we all went out for cocktails and had quite a night on the town.
We left Kathmandu and took a 2 day rafting trip up the Trisuli River. We met up (accidentally) with a friend we met in Cambodia and we spent the day rafting down the river. There were a few good rapids, but we were hoping for a little more action. That night we stayed in tents and were fed by a local family (it was all part of the tour). The food was amazing and endless. I think they think westerners must eat like horses because there were only three of us but enough food for about 7 people. The next day we set out again on the raft and found the river so calm that we spent most of our time sunning ourselves instead of battling rapids. Check out our rafting man :)
We arrived in Pokhara, a quiet lakeside town that is known for it's trekking and relaxing atmosphere. We had plans to go on a trek but our timing was off and it rained most of the time there. No worries, because the town is so chill it was no problem to just hang out. We met up again with Roberta and Leila and with a few other friends rented canoes and went around the lake. We also found a movie room and spent a few nights catching up on some oldies but goodies (The Graduate and Scent of a Woman).
We left Pokhara to go to Chitwan National Park. We signed up for a three-day, two-night tour and it was well worth it. It rained almost the whole time, but the value was great. We went on a canoe ride in the rain (which wasn't so pleasant) and then walked to the elephant breeding center. It was there that I had a little fight with a baby elephant about Bernie. I wanted a picture together with the elephant and the elephant wanted to use Bernie as a rag doll. For about 2 minutes, I was running after the elephant yelling at it, trying to steal Bernie back, while Carla and Ruairi were yelling at me to leave the elephant alone. I didn't see it personally, but I hear it was one of the funniest things they have seen in a while. In the end, the trainer had to break up the fight and the bird was returned to us. Unfortunately, Bernie suffered some minor neck injuries (he was stepped by an elephant) but he's doing great. That night we went to a local dance performance that was surprisingly good (usually these things are super cheesy). The next morning at the extremely early hour of 6am, we piled onto an elephant (an adult) and toured around the park. Along the way we saw a rhinoceros and I got so excited I called it a rhinosaur. So that's the new word of the day, rhinosaur.
After elephants and rhinosaurs, we went back to the resort and packed up to head back to Kathmandu. The next day we had quite a celebration, it was our one year anniversary and it was Ruairi's last night. It was such a fun night that we forgot to take pictures and have only one on the way out of the bar :) Hilariously, it became a who's who of the backpacker circuit. We saw people we have met from as far back as weekends away from Thungsong in Thailand and Vietnam.
So, now we are back down to a duo after three months of being Moe, Larry, and Curly. Ruairi, you ROCK!!! We'll see you in Ireland where we'll have the first ever Irish Thanksgiving. You were the best acquisition. We have no regrets about having a beer with you in HCMC and taking you up on your suggestion to skip Indonesia and join you across land through China, Tibet, Nepal, and India. We'd also like to thank you for picking up our pace, we would probably only be on our second Indonesian Island at the pace we were going :) Every day's been an adventure.
More to come when we hit India....that should be a big one.
Lots of love,
Kate and Carla