November 16, 2014

Kathmandu, Nepal

I got up shortly before 07:00, showered, dressed, packed my bags, paid my bill, and met the Canadian man outside; he then had some coffee and toast before we left on the hotel’s transportation to the bus stop. After arriving at the bus stop and asking where the Greenline bus (that I had bought a ticket before in Kathmandu) was, I was then told that it departs from the city even though it arrives here (apparently Greenline does this (having different drop-off and pick-up points) not just in Sauraha, but Pokhara and Kathmandu as well – as I was too discover later today); I then said “goodbye” to the Canadian man and the hotel staff drove me to the city center (right where I had dinner two nights ago) where the bus was waiting. I tipped the staff and loaded my bags and myself on to the bus. We then drove off through Sauraha, Bharatpur, and to that riverside resort that all Greenline buses stop at for lunch (the location works out well time wise from all three departure points offered by the bus company); the buffet lunch offered the same thing all three times I had been and I had the same melee of food on my plate (steamed rice, a thick lentil-based soup (“dal”) to pour on top of the rice, chow mein, and a fried vegetable and potato mixture covered in a yellow sauce), as well as a cup of coffee. After lunch, we loaded back up on to the same bus and continued onward to Kathmandu; we passed by several locations along the river where cables were strung over the river with a cable car attached for locals to go across; one woman was using a manual cable car, without an encasement (just metal bars fashioned with seats), having to pull her way across (I had never seen that before). After a short period, we stopped for a break (same place as before) and then drove the rest of the way to the capital city. We reached Kathmandu after 15:30 and drove past a building with what looked like a giant rope ladder hanging from its roof (two ropes with plastic pipes spaced about a meter apart) and two painters using this device without any safety harnesses, up four storeys, holding on with one hand (it isn’t hard to make a Swiss seat and attach yourself to a rope with a carabiner – these painters could do for at least some safety measures). The bus then drove past the departure point for the bus company and stopped at some dirt lot hidden behind buildings, which luckily was not far from Thamel and probably the same walking distance to the hostel I had been staying at as the departure point. I then grabbed my bags, walked to the hostel, checked in, and immediately pursued my much neglected work of typing out my journal entries. I spent most of the rest of the day typing away on my laptop; I then went out to eat dinner at a nearby restaurant shortly after 20:00 (I had roasted Aubergine (beer, eggplant served with naan bread), and spinach burek with a boiled egg and slices of carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers). After dinner, I returned to the hostel, talked with an English guy who was preparing to hike the Everest Base Camp trek (I gave him all the drugs for high altitude sickness and bacterial infections that I had bought prior to my Annapurna Circuit trek but never used), and then worked on some more journal entries. I then finally went to sleep.

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An open journal or an exercise in narcissism.