Saturday, 9 June 2012

The Adventure Begins

It's been just a week since I have started my holiday or I should really be saying 'elective'. I somehow ended up in Nepal. At the beginning when I was told that I could go anywhere in the world to do a medical placement in what ever department I wanted, I was stuck for choice as I wanted to literally travel the whole world. I tried sorting out placements in places around the world but they didn't work out, so when my Nepalese friend suggested going to Nepal I thought to my self 'why not?!'. I've never been there and I've always loved the idea of visiting the Himalayas. We managed to get another friend on board after mentioning the idea to her; we'd be the 3 musketeers. So after a few days of planning the trip together spaced over several weeks, we ended up here.

We arrived in Kathmandu not knowing what to expect, and of course we were greeted with a power-cut; the start of many yet to come. The first thing we did was to get a local sim card at the airport. Did you know that they require a passport photo, a photocopy of your passport, your parents' and even your grand father's name, topped of with fingerprints?! I felt like I was signing my life away with all that information, and I found it rather funny how it was soo much easier and quicker to get the Nepalese visa than a plain old sim card. I would highly recommend a hotel pickup at the airport to avoid all the taxi drivers bombarding you, and it's also really nice when someone is there expecting and waiting for you. The first thought that ran through my head as I sat on the car ride to the hotel was how much like India Nepal looked, just with Nepalese looking people instead.

We stayed in a budget guest house and you could tell; I learnt my lesson of not sticking my hand into a tap before letting the water run, as the water can come out brown. Other than that I not really one to complain of petty things and the place wasn't that bad for the price we payed.

We ventured the streets of Thamel (the tourist and backpacker district) on the first night. I absolutely loved the buzz in the air, the narrow streets crammed with little shops, the vibrant colours of all the knick knacks and clothes being sold, and how everything was alive with lights amidst the darkness of the evening. It definitely felt like the beginning of an adventure. We found a little hotel restaurant to have our dinner, and just as we were sitting outside to eat, it started raining accompanied with lightning and another power-cut. However this didn't ruin the meal, as I loved the fact that we had a candle lit dinner in a little thatched hut; it felt so far from home but in a good exotic way. Our first meal was the highly recommended chicken momos, which were basically like wontons with a tomato dipping sauce; you can't leave Nepal without eating a momo.

That night we also experienced our first ever cold candle-lit shower, again due to the power-cut; no surprises there. It's amazing to think just how normal it is to have power cuts, as life would pretty much come to a stand-still back at home if a power cut occurred and people would go into a panicked frenzy. One of the things I like about this part of the world is that people just accept obstacles that may occur, and life just goes on as normal around them.


A post by 'Fullest of Life'

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