So today me and Surendra borrowed Andreas new motorbike (she hasnt rode it yet) to travel up to his village – Pallung – which is about a 3 and a half hour journey. Great fun! We set off fairly early and it was great, sun was shining, I had my dust mask on and we were loving life.
The roads are pretty awful so after a couple of hours it got pretty uncomfortable but it was all going smoothly until we fell off! We went round one of the winding corners and Surendra hit the brakes a bit too hard, the bike slipped out and we both fell off it. Luckily we were both fine and not hurt at all but Andreas new bike didn’t get off so lightly. A pretty big scratch and dent down the side and one of the indicators hanging off. Oooops.
Anyway we brushed ourselves off and continued on the now very tense and uncomfortable journey to the village.
After a couple of hours we left on our journey back to Kathmandu. Just as we were driving out of the gate we realised we had a flat tyre. Great! There are motorbike garages literally everywhere in this country so we got the bike to the garage to get the tyre sorted. Whilst we were there I think Surendra decided that he didn’t really fancy the long and tiring journey back to Kathmandu especially now it was going to be dark so asked if i would mind hitching a lift with someone driving through, on their way to Kathmandu – fine by me! I was not looking forward to the journey on the back of the bike anyway.
Surendra flagged down a car going to Kathmandu (brand new car probably being brought over from India) and I got it. I was actually pretty delighted with my luck when I got in the back of this nice new car with comfy seats and seatbelts and 3 Nepali men for company, I might even sleep. Nope. I got ushered over into the middle seat next to the big fat Nepali man and the biggest Mr Chatterbox in the world got in on the other side
He was a doctor and spoke very good English. He talked to me (or at me) the whole way which actually was quite nice. He loved the royal family, told me all about the problems with Nepal, the history of Nepal, the relationship between Great Britain and Nepal, asked what I thought about Brexit, Man Utd and Jose Mourinho and then a whole load of other stuff. After about an hour in the extremely cramped and squashed car my new friend Rinish started to feel a bit unwell. I gave him some of my water and within a few minutes he was sick. He did manage to get some of it out the window…..but not all of it, grose! We pulled over and he sorted himself out and he gave me my water back, err thanks. Unfortunately this was the first of a whole journey of being sick out the window.
There are quite a lot of police check points in Nepal and we went through one on the way down the mountain. The police man was telling us that the guy driving the car wasn’t allowed to bring people down in this car but as Rinish worked as a civil servant he called the police mans boss, told him it was an emergency and the rest of us in the car were his friends. As he is a doctor he is a more highly ranked officer for the government so we were let through. Phew! Not sure what we would have done if he wasn’t with us, I guess I would have had to get out and try and blag another lift or maybe paid the policeman off.
We eventually got to Kathmandu after getting lost a few times trying to find a shortcut. The traffic was terrible and the roads as polluted and dusty as always. I got dropped off in a very busy part of the city called Kilinka and was told by Surendra to get a taxi from here but Rinish sorted me out a treat and got me on the right bus to take me near the guest house and made sure the bus driver would only charge me 15 rupees (the proper Nepali rate, about 10pence) and let me know were to get off.
Short bus journey, 5 minute walk and I was back. Full on knackered with so much dust in my hair it felt like concrete but probably one day i will never forget. Someone told me afterwards, “now you’ve had a proper Nepali experience.”