“Life will just not wait for us to live it: We are in it, now, and now is the time to live.”
By far the best part about my week long vacation in Pokhara, a very touristy town in central Nepal, was the fact that I met other cyclists like myself. My favorite cyclists, who I quickly befriended and spent every day and evening with, are a Swiss couple in their thirties who have been on the road for a year and a half from Switzerland to here. They are now taking a two month break (in which time their families will come join them), before they set out again to a still unknown destination. Talking with them about different places they have cycled through, including some of their favorites, the Balkans, Turkey, and Iran, has made me change my route as well (though that is a whole other story for a post later on). Another part that I enjoyed, and probably needed, was to meet someone else who understood. They know what it is like to be living out of your tent, camping wherever there is flat ground. They too have done home stays thought their journey. And most importantly, they understood just how difficult India was. After my frustration with India, with the men, but also just with the constant attention, it was great to hear how they too experienced the same thing, and how it drove them insane as well. No matter how well I explain the feeling, no one else will understand these things unless they too have lived through it, which they have.
Since they too are on a “cyclists budget,” (of course some cyclists have more money, but most of the cyclists I have met aim for no more than a ten dollar a day budget) we often cooked for ourselves which, besides just being cheaper, was really nice. They had a rooftop balcony at their guest house, so we spend most evenings up there talking, comparing stories, and eating meals we cooked on our camping stoves. Of course I did meet other tourists, and befriended a few, but I connected much more with the cyclists as we are all living a similar life, and share a passion for cycling and seeing the world from our saddle.
Now, what did I do during my week vacation, besides hang out with new friends of course? Absolutely nothing. In seven days, I managed to write this blog entry, wash a few of my clothes, and fix my bike (which sounds productive until I admit it only took the shop ten minutes, and me another ten for it to be up and going). I went on a few runs, ate (an awful lot), and just sat around doing absolutely nothing. But sometimes, just enjoying life, not “doing saying,” is the perfect thing to do.
Unfortunately, as there is no handle bar tape, my bike looked like it had just come back from the hospital once I was done with it.