From mountains to lakes to the jungle – Nepal seems to have it all. What an amazing country. I found the people, for the most part, kind and helpful. They wanted to help – and not just to, you know, ‘help’. For instance, one morning, while running, I saw a guy hit a dog on his motorcycle — down he went and skidded down the road (the dog ran away). People ran from all over to help him pick up his bike and his shoe and move to the side of the road to make sure he was ok.
Yes, I solicited stares a lot of the time – but I think that happens anywhere where you are different (amazing to think what a homogenous country it is – especially as compared to the US) and when you travel in a place where women have, for the most part, a very specific role. And the stares seemed more curious than mean or harsh.
Kathmandu is big and dusty and dirty and polluted, but people helped out when I needed directions – or smiled when I smiled at them. Children seemed well cared for and I loved seeing them with their parents – both mom and dad seem to have lots of love for them!
But, that is not to say that it is a Shangri-La. The day before I left, there were police in riot gear everywhere and then that evening there seemed to be a street fight breaking out near where Lisa and I bought our veggies (and right near where Katherine and I stayed when we first arrived in Kathmandu). There definitely seemed to be an undertone of something more – perhaps as it is a country that is just coming out of civil unrest and still does not have a constitution?
But all told, it was a great two months and I would for sure go back — there are still so many places to climb and trek and areas that were unexplored! Thanks Nepal — what a great way to start my journey!