Friday, April 22, 2011

Symphony of Dogs

• The sounds of the hostel neighborhood welcomed me back - barking dogs, clanking gates & the laughter of the guys that worked in the hostel • Had my first hot shower in Nepal this morning - there was actually steam billowing over the divide of the washrooms - now that was a treat • With my stay in Nepal winding down, I have time for reflection • What a busy and full two weeks it has been • Short in terms of most volunteer missions, but rich in experiences, textures and effects it had on me • I will miss my young Monks - I grew fond of their welcoming faces each day • I will miss the camaraderie of traveling with someone who shared similar experiences - Kitti and I live half a country a part yet will be bonded by what we have shared - we both lived in the moment and did not dwell on anything • This was so the right thing to do for me - a tonic if you will • My eyes have been opened to looking at things from a whole new angle - I think a shake-up like this is needed every once in a while to put things in perspective • Kitti had wonderful traditional Nepalese outfits made while in Chitwan & Kathmandu, and suggested I had one made, today • The fact that I was leaving in 36 hours didn't seem a concern to Kitti • Off we went to our local neighborhood "Fabricland", and found some material for two tops and a pair of pants • I settled on a lovely turquoise material with gold paisley for one top, and a red and black print for the other • Kitti had dealt with alterations with a seamstress earlier in the trip, so back we went to get measured up for my outfit • The tiny little side street shop had three foot powered sewing machine stations, an ironing area and the main counter where our proprietor measured me up and drew out the pattern and did her cutting  - it was all of 100 square feet • There was a side room with completed outfits and material, supplies & a full length mirror on the wall that hit my shoulders • There was discussion of neck line and arm length - well, when I say discussion, more hand gestures and drawings • The seamstress said the outfit wouldn't be ready till Sunday, but since Kitti was leaving on Sunday evening that was ok - Kitti would pick up the outfit and just mail it to me, once home • I was delighted with the idea of having a traditional outfit • My rupees had lasted the week, until I bought my material, I hadn't counted on that - the material and sewing of the outfit cost me $25 -a veritable bargoon in my eyes • What a great souvenir • We went into Thamel, to the Kathmandu Guest House, our usual drop off point • Because we had wandered this main drag of Thamel a few times, I guess our faces were familiar to a few, as we were getting a friendly "Nameste" as we walked by • I had seen lovely silk jackets when we were previously in town and decided that was to be my mission for today • I found a gorgeous turquoise based one that fit like it was meant for me - it was a true Nepal style jacket, that I just loved & knew I would get a lot of wear out of it • We hit our Internet cafe, that was truly high speed, for the first time in a week • We lunched at the Pumpernickel Bakery and had croissants and tea • Out of the blue a parade of cows came walking down the main drag, between cars, motorbikes and pedestrians • We were wandering without any particular pattern down the streets of Thamel when Chris, who was in the hostel with us our first week, came up to us and said hi • Even in Thamel, you never know who you are going to see • Chris and her daughter Shea, had been in Chitwan, and met up with Kitti's friend Barb, and were now doing volunteer work at an orphanage in Kathmandu • We made plans to all meet up at 5:30 on the rooftop of the Tibetan Tea House for drinks • What a fabulous view from the rooftop looking down on intimate neighboring private rooftop gardens • Had a wonderful sighting of snow capped peak in the far distance - it was a clear day • By 6:15 it was getting dark and we had to leave, in order to get home and down the long scary hill to the hostel before it was totally dark • Back in time for - Daal Bhaat • It was a pleasure watching Kitti enjoy her meals here - Kitti truly embraced Daal Bhaat - and loved it like a native • I on the other hand, will be happy to say goodbye to it • Morgan, an 18 year old volunteer from Vancouver was now in the house - we had met her our first week - she was now back to take up where we left off with the Monks • Morgan was young in years, but not experiences • We gave her an update as to what we did with the Monks and what to expect, since she is going there on Sunday, when they are back in class • Kitti and I lay in our beds, with our aroma therapy candle from home glowing, as the power went off during dinner, and talked till at least 10:30 - that was a first • It can be hard to be with someone 24/7 and we found we traveled really well together Dozed off to my symphony of dogs

My seamstress, with my material for my outfits
on the counter.

Cows appearing in Thamel.
Where did they come from?

I just couldn't believe what I was seeing.

Not phased by the traffic.

This is ironic,
as this is the main sound you hear in town.
I guess no one read the sign.

Kitti on the rooftop of the Tibetan Tea House in Thamel.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.