Nepal has been a whirlwind of a trip so far with nonstop planning and prepping for our trek. I suppose that's what happens when you arrive after 3 months of traveling in tropical places. We came empty handed and now are fully geared up and ready to go! It was quite painful purchasing everything... as we have it ALL at home. Hats, gloves, fleece jackets, shirts... you name it, we had to buy it! So frustrating. Not to mention the hiking boots I had to buy and break in! Ahhhhh. I will finally be able to relax tomorrow when we are on the trail... or will that be relaxing?? Probably not... have I mentioned how out of shape we are? Thin but without much muscle - not good! Wish us luck :)
We did manage to escape to Chitwan National Park for a few days where we did a full day jungle walk, bathed elephants and saw some rhinos from atop an elephant! It was action packed but so much fun and we have some great pictures. The bathing of the elephants was hilarious. We rode on top of the dirty elephant and it was shooting water through it's trunk all over us. Then it rolled over and dumped us into the river. It was a blast!
During our first week in Nepal, we were always late no matter where we were going. It was never by a lot, maybe 5-20 min each time but enough to make us almost miss buses, etc. We were amazed at Nepal, thinking this country was always early for everything. Finally, a man in Chitwan said to us, "I think you are still on India time." We both stared at him wondering what he was talking about. For some reason, unbeknown to us, no one bothered to tell us that Nepal and India have a 15 minute time difference. 15 minutes! We had never heard of such a thing and there was certainly no announcement on our short flight over the border. Thank god he told us or we would have missed a bus or flight eventually!
So we are off tomorrow to begin trekking. We are headed to Annapurna Base Camp (12,500 ft) with a detour loop to Poon Hill on the way. We have heard that it takes anywhere from 9 days to 14 days to complete the route so who knows! We are in no rush and just want to enjoy our time. We won't have internet for the trekking so I will be sure to blog as soon as we return!
We will be seeing you all shortly... possibly as early as December 7!
Love, Al & Nate