Our family adopted a tradition from some dear friends a few years back entitled Roses and Thorns. Before tucking in for the night, we all join together to reflect on our favorite and least favorite events from the day. In all the chaos of daily life, it has become an enjoyable respite and a way for us to all connect and reflect as a family. Before we embarked on our big trip, it was also a means to tease out what the kids were up to while at school or other various activities. Now that we are together 24/7, it is a time to check in to see how we are all doing and reminisce about our adventures big or small. I started to log these roses and thorns in a notebook to keep a diary of our trip. Yesterday, was the first time, my daughter really couldn’t think of a thorn. Yes!
We have now been in Nepal for just over a month. Aside from our trek out of the valley, we have stayed entirely in Kathmandu. The hustle and bustle of the city can at times be over stimulating, with the pollution, traffic and constant noise, but I have to admit I love it. I think this is the first time that I have not let the negatives get to me and just embraced it all. We have been going on short excursions to temples, stupas, and walks into the old section of the city. In just a mere 15 minute jaunt across the Basmati foot bridge from my in-law’s house in Chhauni, we can be in Jhhonchen (Old Freak Street), Asan, Durbar Square or New Road. This old section of Kathmandu is so full of life and color and hustle it is a joy to take it all in. Below are a some images from the last few weeks. Thank you for following us on our journey!
Schools out and the local kids enjoy some street side pani puri
All the fish you can find in Asan
Hot roasted peanuts!
You never know when you might stumble upon a wedding procession in the middle of the day.
Wedding procession through Chhauni
He’s got the beat.
Bring it on home!
Young girl at Pashupati
Sadhu at Pashupati
Architecture museum in Patan
Views from old Newar building
Temple sights from Patan
Lighting the candles at the Bagalamukhi Temple in Patan
Mother and son making offerings to the deity of the temple, Patan
Let there be light
How much is that doggie in the doorway?
One of a few screen prints on old buildings in Patan
As we were leaving the Muktinath temple on our way back to the village of Kagbeni, my daughter reached the entrance gate and said, “We already are where we are.” Certainly, she meant that we had returned back to where we started but I was so charmed by this statement. It has become a mantra in a way. Each time we reached a place we had been before, I found myself saying it. We are where we are and we keep coming back. A metaphor of sorts.
As I mentioned in a previous post, my husband and I went on the Annapurna trek exactly 20 years ago. We did it in reverse this time, flying into Jomsom and walking back to Ghasa. It was my goal to make it up to Muktinath since we were unable to reach there the last time due to the all too common traveler’s sickness. It was wonderful to be back here with our children despite some of the challenges with the road. Development in the area has certainly had a negative impact for trekkers, but we were able to find alternative trails that avoided the dusty and often times dangerous road.
Rather than bore you dear readers, with a full trip report, I offer these visuals. I did spend some extra time to caption the images if you are so inclined.
S.T.A.L (short take off and landing) flight from Pokhara to Jomsom
Flying through the mountains you feel as if you could reach out and touch them.
Thumbs up from the pilot is what you want to see
Runway in sight
Starting out from Jomsom
Village of Thini
View from Thini
Shepherd on the Kaligundagi River Basin
On the road to Muktinath
Walking past abandoned barrels of tar used for paving the road.