Foot hills of the Himalaya's
Another 6 hour bus ride, which means hearing the Vengaboys blasting out over the soud system again, we have now learned they are quite the musical sensation here, didn't you know?!
Pokhara is quiet, beautiful and cleaner! We could see the snow capped Himalaya's from our window and the paragliders floating around in front of it, quite a view for R 550 a night, about £2.50 each, bargain! Then beneath that a beautiful still lake, covered in colourful rowing boats. First reactions are that Joe would love it here, being go trekking for weeks and weeks here, it's the main attraction and I just wish Joe could have come here and experienced the Himalaya's.
We spent a lot of time with a friend Dennis who we met at Kathmandu airport and then randomly saw him in Pokhara. We went out on a rowing boat and it was just beautiful, so so beautiful and peaceful, well until we got onto the lake that is!
A few of us went hiking up a little mountain called Saragkot, of coursw we intended to leave early to escape the heat and managed to hike up at 12pm, haha. it was a beautiful walk up a lot of steps, maganed to go the wrong way and Pip got stung by a hugeeeeeee wasp, but otherwise it was so lovely. We reached our false summit and could see all over Pokhara and then met a local guy called Hom, so we all went back to his beautiful house tucked away in the mountain and he gave up Nepali tea and chatted to him mum, well we couldn't undersstand eachother, but we put my sunglasses on her and she thought we were hilarious. She kept on copying a friend that was smoking and she was in stitches! Maybe one of those had to be there moments... Hom then took us through the mountain villages away from where most tourists go, so nice to see those areas. The view from their porch is unreal and it's hard to believe that people still live in the way they do, self sufficient, with barely any electricity and you see all these old old men and women carrying around HUGE bails of crops, they never retire there, always working. It was so beautiful and had joe on my mind constantly whilst we were there.
Next day we went to watch the sunrise over the Himalaya's, it was incredible! The particular mountain was called Machapuchre ( not sure on the spelling) but it was insanely beautiful. We then met Hom again and went for another hike over the mountain, we walked through many villages and had pancakes along the way, gritty ones at that haha =) and saw a lot of rice fields, they look so pretty though. hom's idea of 10 minutes, is more like 40, so it ended up being a 12 hour hike. on our way down we walked over our last hill and there right in front of us was a buffalo that has been killed, just lovely, so there was blood everywhere and they were hacking away at it, face sitting just by the path, don't see that everyday and we stopped a while before that to have a spontaneous dance on the mountain as we discovered he had the vengagboys on his mobile, so funny!
Also managed to sing at an open mic night, after being persuaded by Pip and an Australian couple we met, it was good fun, but after looping ' and the world will live as one' about a hundred times, you would have thought once I started singing 'this songs going on for too long' would have been a subtle enough hint to end haha!
We then headed back to Kathmandu for a few days and met with friends again, over ate and walked around the city some more. We went to see some temples in a place called Bhaktapur and also went to see the kumari. This is 'the living goddess', really fascinating, basically a nepali girl will be chosen after being wittled down from a group of girls by eye colour, star sign, tone of voice and then placed in a dark room filled with buffalos, chanting and skulls and whoever doesn't seem scared is the next kumari, she then from 3 onwards the girl lives in the 'palace' until she menstrates for the first time and has to leave. Whilst she is in there she gets an education and almost anything really, but is bound to the four walls, apart from 3 times a year. So so crazy! We went to see her, she stands at the window for a few seconds ech day for tourists.
Nepal was fascinating as far as culture, religion, superstition are concerned, I have learnt a lot having been there. Although, I won't be missing the endless spitting, beaping and nasty toilet habbits! haha