S M F G · A Counter-Clockwise Trip Around The World

Freezing in Kathmandu

Dec 16th 2008
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Buddha is watching you

And after a brief flight the Kathmandu valley was in front of my rickshaw. I immediately experienced the feeling of the walking Dollar: the assault of the sellers was double than in Delhi! I switched off my ears and walked to my host’s place.

So far so good: the weather was good and the sun was bright and hot. It was already Tuesday, so applying for the visa on Wednesday morning would give me three days before the week-end. I was quite satisfied and optimistic.

Then Lady Reality came:

Un pessimista è un ottimista con esperienza!

The warm sun turned out to be a pure illusion, revealing the nasty «Effetto Pan e Vin» as soon as the sun went down. The temperature dropped from 30 to 3 degrees in a couple of minutes, and as most of the houses in Kathmandu my couch didn’t have a central heating—let alone hot water :-)

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Me (with bindi) in a rooftop in Durbar Square

As a conspicuous number of tourists are in Nepal for the sake of the Indian visa, collecting information on the Embassy and the procedure was relatively easy. But I kinda didn’t like the news. Anyway, the next morning at 5:30 I was on my way to the Embassy, walking with my micro-torch in the dark alleys—the power cuts in Kathmandu are less than rare, for so to speak.

Long story short, I applied for a three-months visa but it would take other three days: Monday!

A small intermission. I was in such a hurry because I already had set up a meeting in Mumbai on the 18th with a friend, before the Delhi Belly. They sent me back to Monday (the 15th), meaning that the trip from Kathmandu to Mumbai would have been without stops. And it is a long trip.

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Only when you have flu you have time for sewing flags

I decided to visit Kathmandu and the neighbouring cities (see gallery) but after a couple of days I fell ill. The good news is that in the couch there was—depending on the power-cuts—a wireless connection, so I used the time in the bed for uploading most of the galleries here and for sewing the last flags on my backpack :-)

During the—short—sunny portion of the day I was wandering around and collecting info for the visa thing, during the dark I was fully dressed with my fleece under two heavy blankets and into my sleeping bag.

On Monday I tried my luck: the guy at the Embassy’s counter told me I can only apply for a three-months visa, but I wanted a six-months one. Thus I slipped a few thousand-rupees bills with my passport to the officer, asking for a longer visa. Unsurprisingly enough, the verdict was no luck: «Not possible, not possible!» At least he gave me back the money! :-)

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The bus from Kathmandu to the border. Best viewed at full size: notice the writing on the bumper :-)

After celebrating the visa with a few fellow queuers, the next morning I was facing the Good luck bus that would eventually bring me to the Indian border.


This post is filed under Asia, Nepal and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

13 Responses

  1. Ally says:

    Pi,
    your adventures are really interesting!

    Was the decision to travel around the world the best you have taken in years?

  2. Ally says:

    Well,
    although some posts of yours show frustration for the odd problem, it is so clear that the journey is a great one!
    What are you planning after India?
    It seems that you have nearly completed the tour of all the coast line!

    Ale

  3. Società anonima di ingegneria says:

    A chi ringiovanisce girando per il mondo, alla faccia di chi si lascia invecchiare in un ufficio!! :-) :-)
    DB (e Eva)

  4. Società anonima di ingegneria says:

    PS: se invece non compi gli anni oggi, taglia e incolla il precedente commento alla data corretta! :-)

  5. a-l-e says:

    happy birthday to youuuuuuu!!!!!!…..:)

  6. a-l-e says:

    …mmmhmm…
    ¿is the red dot a tattoo?
    [¡I hope so…! :P]
    …best wishes for Ur eighteen’s 22nd anniversary…

  7. Ally says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!

    FROM ALL OF THE CAPS

  8. Max says:

    Auguri Trave! un po in ritardo… come procede l’avventura?!
    Max.

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