We’ve slept in three countries in three nights and being here in Kathmandu feels like putting on your favourite, most comfortable pyjamas. That comfort comes after many buses and planes that transported us between Ulaanbaatar and Kathmandu via Beijing and Guangzhou.
Raj, my long time KTM friend picked us up at the airport and welcomed us with garlands of marigolds as is tradition here. The drive from the airport seemed less eventful than usual, perhaps because we pre-acclimatized to traffic and wild driving in UB. It was lovely to get spit out of the travel bardo after 26 hours into the company of Raj and Kumar.
We got settled into our accommodations and headed off to Momo Taro’s to complete our transition to Kathmandu. It’s been one of my go to places for the past decade. Not being able to choose, we each ordered a bento box and of course, a fresh lemon soda. It’s a staple beverage for us here-refreshing and oh, so tasty.
We had a busy afternoon checking things off our list. Nepali SIM card. Hair cuts. Visit with Raj. Look at maps. That kind of stuff. Evening came too quickly and we headed off for dinner and of course, had another quintessential KTM beverage, an Everest Beer, by candlelight no less.
We are only here for two nights before heading off to Leh, Ladakh in Northern India on Tuesday. Internet will be scarce up there so be sure to soak up all of our pictures and posts before we go into what is likely a 2 week radio silence.
A few folks have asked about my hand and I realize that I hadn’t said much since we were released from UB on the Friday past. I finished the last of my oral course of antibiotics today after 18 days of various infection fighting superheroes. I’ll be looking to rebuild much of my microbiota over the next while with lots of fermented foods. I’m hoping and somewhat confident that the infection is gone but the next few days will tell that. The incision is closed but in that super sensitive new baby skin/feels like it was burnt stage so I’m still a bit tentative with it. I have almost a full range of motion and I continue to work with the scar tissue stretches in kinda a deja vu. It will be five weeks post surgery on Thursday and I hope to be past the super sensitive stage and onto the super squeezie cow workouts soon. I’m really hoping to make significant progress over the next few weeks so I can declare the summer of hands I’ve at the autumn equinox.
Of course, being here today reminds of the all the times I was here before and brings to mind 2016 and having to leave here suddenly due to illness on my last Everest expedition. I’m looking forward to creating some new memories to soften the edges that remain from that time.
It’s been a very wet monsoon season here with sever flooding in some parts of the country. I almost got arrested taking this picture of these clever stepping stones today because they happened to be next to one of the US embassy compounds. Whoops.
Rotating brown outs have stopped for KTM for now and so we are enjoying 24 hour power-for the past decade, there was only enough power for folks to have access to it for 4-6 hours per day but with some new electrical projects now on-line, it means we get to have a fan to cool the air a bit tonight while we sleep-much appreciated since it’s much warmer here than in Mongolia or home. There are some new stores and restaurants and some of my favourites are still going strong.
So I’m in my pyjamas looking forward to catching up on some sleep-we lost a little in the bardo-and feeling like I’ve sleeping into my comfy travel jammies by dropping in on an old friend city and on some old friends as well. Good night.