Grahame striding ahead in the distance a group behind trying to maintain pace while further back others looking around these strange environments taking it all in, at the rear I shuffle along at a steady pace keeping an eye on those looking everywhere but at their feet which on these rough tracks is often not the best idea. Some of our team have had some heavy falls and though I get the hurry up from time to time I prefer to keep a rear guard action and watch out for our stragglers.
It is hard not to spend to much time looking instead of watching your footing as the terrain and aesthetics are absolutely awe inspiring. Gods creation, mans ingenuity and social development, the landscape, the smells and the people make for some sensory confrontations. Trekking through this beautiful nation is something we will definitely miss.
On the topic of auditory confrontations we will not miss the early morning Nepali habit of clearing the throat with a dreadful hacking noise that would raise the deaf from sleep and then spitting all over the place, and then there are the men with the same habit.
Nepali 'road roulette' is another item we won't miss in a hurry, taking a breath every time a two lane track is turned into four lanes, at times all heading the same direction until oncoming traffic forces a hasty change, driving into pot holes and passing another car before climbing out of the pothole. Keeping left is obviously optional. Giving way to nothing except cattle. Merging means if put my hand out of the window and wave in a downward motion means I'm coming no matter what. Roundabouts generate the most inspirational driving we've ever seen, there is no sense of driving around the roundabout to an exit when you can cut across four lanes heading in the wrong direction to make your turn, just keep weaving between the oncoming cars until you get there. Reversing into a busy multi lane roundabout being pulled up by a police officer for it, arguing with the copper until the policemans mobile phone rings and while he is distracted continue reversing and drive off!
Time with the team either at an event or catching up at meals with retelling the days stories and antics is another special time each day. Hilarious times, headlamp dancing, gags and photo fun will be more items added to the list of things we will miss. Thank you to all the team players this trip.
The Nepali people have left an indelible mark on our hearts with their ability to welcome you into what ever enviroment, school, home, church, down town, is precious and much appreciated. So many people from many walks of life both churched and non have extended themselves in hospitality and we look forward to reacquainting with these soft and generous folk one day. We are not naive and realise that no nation is without an undesirable element in fact that is why we are here because of the damage they cause, but by and large the people are and have been wonderful and easy to love. The people we will miss the most.
Thank you Nepal,
The Parry family.