“Belief? What do I believe in? I believe in sun. In rock. In the dogma of the sun and the doctrine of the rock. I believe in blood, fire, woman, rivers, eagles, storm, drums, flutes, banjos, and broom-tailed horses…”
After arriving in Khadbari, the small town we are starting our trek from, I was finally able to breath a sigh of relief. The air was clean, the water unpolluted, and best of all, people actually smile here! Something I have realized again and again throughout this adventure is that people who live in the mountains (or even foothills) seem to lead much happier lives. Maybe it is because they are closer to nature, or maybe it is because their lives are harder and therefor, they are more grateful, but whatever it is, it is always a relief to get out of the flats and back into a world of laughing and friendly people.
The day after we arrived there was an amazingly colorful and vibrant market that took place in the middle of town. We wandered around the hundreds of people and venders selling everything from clothes to garlic. I bought potatoes from a giggling lady under an umbrella, and donuts from a smiling man who laughed after I came back three different times within the hour. Though the town isn’t “touristy” like many towns in Nepal, there are westerns (notably climbers and trekkers) who occasionally pass through which means we didn’t attract nearly the same amount of unwanted attention we did on the flats.
As Kevin has been sick (more about that in the next post), we found ourselves a nice guest house where we could stay and recuperate for a week before heading off. We had a tv (my first one in nine months) and sporadic wifi, and even more importantly, a clean bedbug free bed. We quickly found ourselves two restaurants, once which served momos (like dumplings) for forty cents a plate, and another which served a heaping pile of delicious chowmein for seventy cents, and gave them each wonderful business as we returned multiple times a day to both.