originally part of training/fundraising for the Hepatitis C Trust's Nepal trek. Now, sporadic musings...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

feeling positively ceremonial...

We stop for lunch. For an awful moment, I think the table and chairs are going to come out - this is too much... too bloody colonial for my taste! But our porters merely spread a tarpaulin (although they must also have set up a field kitchen of sorts to heat our beans and bread...) As with carrying the baskets filled with our gear, I have to remind myself this is their job (I feel quite chastised by our Sherpa Sirdar, Karna, when I comment on the size of the baskets and how they must weight a ton - he's quite sharp, 60kg quite normal for them). One of the local Women's Groups (not exactly WI, these women build the paths and steps we walk on - not that I'm saying the WI couldn't, just that they don't usually go in for that sort of thing) have a presentation to make to us. We each get bedecked with a luscious, fragrant garland or two, and a generous dab of red dye on our foreheads. The garlands are mainly bright marigolds, and feel cool, as if they've been soaked in iced water in readiness for our sweaty arrival.

Although busy scribbling, I take a couple of pics...


Then we attend to our stomachs... The food is delicious. The cheese is something like Emmental, so with the soya beans and the toasted unleavened bread I guess we're having cheesy beans on toast half-way up a Himalayan mountain - beats even the best value greasy spoon hands down (even without the views). In my notebook; what a spectacular place to stop for lunch. Annapurna and Machhapuchhare, the Fish Tail Peak, over to our left, Manaslu, Peak 29 (sic), Himultuli and Bowdahimal on our right...
Next stop the school...

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I began blogging during training for a trek in the Himalayas... several lifetimes ago. Currently working on my novel - in the tiny spaces left by a 50 hour plus working week...