Kathmandu (Thursday 27 October 2011) by Robin
So I am here in Kathmandu. All afternoon yetsterday I didn’t even believe it myself. I meant to blog last night but I ended up falling alseep while trying to start it.
Sooo here is a short description of my getting to Nepal.
We flew into Kathmandu around 1:00. As we were flying in I was able to get pictures of everest. Talk about breathtaking.
Your plane stopped and we went down these stairs and got on a bus so we could get to the arrivals the arrives terminal. Jack and a friend of his who works at the airport met me there and I got whisked through the visa process, customs was not even actually checking people so that was no problem. We got a taxi outside of the airport and went to the house I wil be staying at. It is in a place called Mitrapark and the house is beautiful. The household was taking naps so Jack and I went for a walk. We went to an area called Pashupati, which some say is the holiest Hindu site in the entire world. It was unbelievable.
It is full of temples and shrines that are thousands of years old. We were able to see 7 cremations happening and that should probably be explained. It is Hindu believe that the most auspicious way to die is with part of you in the holy river. There are steps and places to lay that looked like they had been there for thousands upon thousands of years. In Hindu tradition, a body is cremated after death because the soul has already left and it is just a shell. I have no words for what it was like but all I can say is it was moving. The whole Hindu way of life and thinking makes a whole lot of since in many ways.
Oh but before all that we were walking down to this area and we stopped at another temple area where a group of people were getting ready for the Hari new year. Jack and I were watching them draw these gorgeous designs on the ground with marigolds and powders when someone said “Robin?!” it was my old boss from hartwick, James Jolly’s nephew. James put us in contact when he heard of this trip and we had been chatting on Facebook some and he recognized me from my photo. Turns out he lives pretty close to where I am staying. oh and his name is Kiru and he is very very nice!
Anyways, we walked around the holy site for a while and then came back to the house for a snack and then went back out again to meet 2 American doctor friends who had come here with Jack, and went to dinner. It was their last night here and my first. We ate dinner on the roof of this great restaurant right next to a Bhuddist temple. The temple was all lit up for the festival that was yesterday, the festival of lights and the festival in honor of the goddess of wealth. We got to see fireworks during dinner thanks to the festival which were amazing because they helped keep me awake!
I was still unsure if what day it was just get and beyond exhausted from three and a half days of nonstop traveling. So glad I now get a day where I do not have to travel and nothing is exactly planned. I hope to be able to get my stuff organized today and rest, although last night I was asleep before 10, even with firecrackers being set off in the next room. I only woke up once last night at 3am because I was a little chilly but went right back to sleep till 6:30. So pretty much my same schedule as back home. How on earth did I do that?
So instead of hearing my mom getting ready for school, I am hearing the traffic of Kathmandu, bells being rung for prayers and some people downstairs working. Not sure if it’s the family or the staff up though.
So, that is a bit of what happened yesterday. If my welcome to the village is this amazing and easy, I think I may never come home, sorry folks. Haha.