I picked my Sister up from the airport last night. Every time I see an airport I think of my time in Nepal. The sights, sounds, tastes and smells that I experienced suddenly hit me like a nostalgic freight train. It has almost been three years since I left for my life changing trip to the other side of the world. It's hard to believe, but it is also a reminder to myself that I need to travel again. I need to escape the daily grind and gift myself new experiences.
Today's blog post will be a flashback to Nepal and some of the highlights of my trip.
Let's be honest. I went for the sights, I wanted to see Mount Everest. I always wondered what it would be like to stand at the top of the world looking down thinking about all of my friends and family back home and how life seems to carry on while I was standing 29,000 ft above sea level.
It took us two weeks of hiking to get this view and it was totally worth it. After seeing Everest and reading John Krakauer's "Into Thin Air" the urge to climb it disappeared. It takes a lot of dedication to climb that mountain, not to mention the $50,000 price to hire a team to bring you there. It's not for me, and I could never put my family in a situation where the chances of me making back are slim to none.
But I can still dream. The Canadian Rockies are my second home and some of my favourite memories were made climbing those mountains.
I never knew what to expect of the people of Nepal. I read stories online, some good, some bad, but you can never know for sure until you experience it yourself. When we first left the airport a swarm of Nepalese taxi drivers surrounded us trying to grab our bags to take to their cars. It was overwhelming. I had wondered what we had got ourselves into while driving down a dark road en route to our hotel.
Near the end of the trip I looked back at all the interactions I had with the locals. Although, I haven't been to many other countries I can confidently say that Nepalese people will always be my favourite. The most honest, hardworking, caring people I have ever met. It's hard to put into words how great they are, you will have to see for yourself.
Tastes & Smells
A little overwhelming at first. I was used to western cuisine and food safety. As time went on my stomach got used to the food. It actually wasn't that bad, besides the Dal Bhat that made me sick for the first 4 days of our trek, and the ketchup that replaced the pizza and pasta sauces on the trail. There were many bad meals and there were many amazing meals! Some of my favourite meals included; Yak Burger, Fresh Nan bread and curry, Fried Goat Brain & Intestines, and Noodles. Noodles saved my life!
(Lukla Airport, Nepal)
Three years later as I look back on my trip to Nepal; I think about how it changed my outlook on life. I am so grateful for what I have here at home. Sometimes I complain about things that I shouldn't be complaining about. This trip made me realize that I need to make the best of all situations, good and bad.
Here I am now, finishing my last semester of school. I love my program, instructors and classmates. It will be sad to see it all go, but I am also excited for the future. I am excited to get out there and explore the planet, photographing it along the way. Not only for myself, but to inspire others to get out of the daily grind and gain new experiences in an unfamiliar place.