Travel Journal Overview: I’ve been laughed at, ridiculed, and thought of as running away from something. At least that’s what it was like growing up whenever I mentioned my desire to find a place called home. A place to belong. A place I can live and truly enjoy the feeling of life.
My middle index finger goes up to all those people now.
Unexpectedly, in Nepal, out of nowhere it hit me like a sledgehammer.
The feeling of what home was like.
Something I’d never felt before …
I looked out my window and saw the ice capped Himalayan mountains. How much better could it get? Well a bacon breakfast helped. It seemed quite incredible to have arrived at such a good hotel as Dharma Inn. Indeed the small do it all guy Mamut was quite funny in his appreciation for life and travelers.
He had a big tuft of dark brown wavy hair sitting atop his young looking face. A face that carried a huge smile at every thought about Nepal, and travel. He always greeted my with his two hands pressed together as if in Prayer, indeed he even seemed to be mumbling something at times. He became a welcome source of general information and good humor.
It was downstairs at reception that the hotel manager, who had picked me up on his bike during the freezing night, showed his business head. Chubby had a smile too, a good one. It was sincere and not so fake like many hotel owners with their own tour company. I sat there for over an hour watching that smile as he explained all about trekking in Pokhara, the costs, time, everything.
I was in the middle of a full blown sinus infection and was not really taking it all in. Still it gave me an idea on what to expect, and an excuse to say I was too sick to do anything at the moment. Chubby seemed fine with that, in fact sympathetic. Maybe it was because I said I had no time frame and could stay for a long time. Or maybe because he was actually a nice guy..
Pokhara is basically made up of one long road it seemed. Later I would discover how wrong that first assumption was. The road basically followed a path around Lake Phewa Tal, which if crossed would lead you up a green mountain to the infamous world peace stupa. Meanwhile from the hotel I walked down that very main road.
From the heavy jostle of India, and border crossings, it was quite strange to see only a few cars drive by. An odd couple of cows were looked more bored than engaged in garbage eating. The whole road seemed lined with trekking stores, restaurants, internet cafés and the odd artisan shop. Genteel chant like music seemed to be flowing from every shop front and gave me a very tranquil feeling.
Before me stood a vivid blue skyline background magnified by the magnificent Annapurna ice capped mountain range. Beside me, the quite, gentle chanting of “Omadi Padi Hum” flowed out of store fronts as a cow ambled across the road without concern. A local man passed by and pressed his hands together and greeted me with a smile and humble “Nameste” before moving on.
I looked up and felt a lifetime of emotion overcome me. Like a sledgehammer it hit me with an impact I’d never felt the likes of before. It said; quite simply,
“this is home“. This is what it feels like.
After near 4 years of searching I finally felt something I was desperately certain existed; but never saw the proof. Now I had it in my heart.
Subnote: If you’ve been reading on this website for a while then you will know that Nepal, is not my home. But it did, quite unexpectedly, one winters morning give to me the gift of a feeling for something I am searching for; and now know exists. It told me I was right. And it told be I was on the right road.
It might sound strange to others, especially if you already have a home and family. But to me, at that time, it was a milestone in hope and achievement.
Some related links on this website that you might like: (including a lot more photographs from Nepal)
Resources: How to Guide – Nepal to Tibet Overland
Resources: How to hire a guide in Nepal