31 May 2012

Back home after Nepal.

The usual pictures and stories will have to wait until I have some logistics and backlog issues figured out. But it was good. Here’s the no-nonsense rundown.

On the way there I was a bit anxious to be on the road again, as well as worrying about the fact that I was joining forces with a friend, something which I haven’t done in a long long while. Luckily, my worries were unfounded. From the minute I arrived in Kathmandu,  I felt very comfortable. Nepal is a Buddhist country, and all the people are relaxed and friendly. There’s a relatively high level of proficiency in English, as well as a decent developed tourist infrastructure. It’s a big playground for trekkers and spirituality seekers (terminus of the old overland hippy trail, of which I did half in 2010), even though I feel absolutely zero affinity for the latter.

We did it slow. General strikes shut the country down for about one week, which means no transport or internet. Road conditions and general discomfort make distances quite large. Which means a lot of beers, watching street scenes, and idle loitering. I didn’t really have the time to all I set out to do, but I was fine with that.

This trip was quite uncharacteristic for me, in that I didn’t push the experience, and just permitted myself to have an easy time and enjoy myself. I still had my good experiences and stories, but it lacked the restless drive that marked previous jaunts. This is probably good and bad. I’m also surprised to conclude that when you travel with someone, the time you spend with this person becomes almost as important as the time you spend interacting with the location, and it’s best to prepare for this. In hindsight, I was lucky that my partner in crime is a seasoned traveler, and this made our joint outing completely friction free.

All in all, I’m happy with the way things went, even though I didn’t plan it this way, and probably won’t pursue it like that in the future again.

I’m also happy to be able to write “back home” and imply Edinburgh.

Watch this space.

PS Bahrein is a sandy heap of shit and you should do all in your power to avoid it.

PPS You might have noticed that this post is pretty raw. Understand that I write this blog in equal measure for you as well as me. I learn a lot about my thoughts by forcing myself to put them in words.