Wednesday, August 25, 2010
the road to pokhara
As our month in Nepal was coming to an end and the students at Shree Mangal Dvip were busy with exams, Melissa and I decided it was the perfect time to head north-west up the Prithvi Highway to the lakeside town of Pokhara. We were fortunate to discover that one of our student's fathers ran a trekking company, Swiss Nepal Family Trekking & Expedition, and so we were able to get bus tickets on a comfortable and safe bus for only 400 rupees. I highly recommend checking Swiss Nepal Family out if you want to do some exploring in Nepal.
The bus was meant to leave at 7:00 am, but as we had learned, there's time, and there's Nepali time. I'm not sure when we left, I decided to ignore all time-telling devices for this adventure. The journey from Kathmandu to Pokhara is allegedly eight hours, but I believe it may have actually been more like eleven— we were met with several landslides that backed traffic up for miles. Thankfully, we were in a comfortable bus!
I had my window fully open the whole way to feel the rain, smell the trees and hear the splashing wheels. I was exhilirated, I felt like a child; full of wonder and excitement. I was heading toward the Annapurna range, and if the universe decided to smile upon me, I would finally be able to see what I had dreamed of seeing since I was seven years old. All those afternoons I spent pretending I was climbing the Himalaya on my bunk bed, pitching tents with my sheets, feeding my panda porridge out of a pot I stole from the kitchen. I dreamt of yaks, butter tea, snow-capped peaks, Hillary and Norgay. All I wanted was a glimpse.
Suddenly, fifty miles outside of Pokhara, the sky parted, and every breath in my body was taken from me.