Hello all! Happy Jewish new year and Eid Mubarak! I’ve got one final day in Kathmandu left, a town I’ve fallen in love with, before I head back.
Hanging out with the backpackers, is probably how I’d describe my trip so far. In Delhi I stayed at a cheap and cheerful hotel called Ajay’s Guest House, which is right in the middle of the densely populated Paharganj market. The place is backpacker central, and more specifically Israeli backpackers central. According to some, there are over 20,000 Israeli travellers in India at any one time. The first night I struck up a friendship with a guy from near Manchester, who was also planning to come up to Kathmandu. We left together two days after, having spent much of that time hanging out with two Israeli women, who were great fun and were planning to visit north India. Another one we met the first night had spent a year back-packing India. Now that is serious stamina and was only around 22. There are so many Israelis here that I’ve had touts approach me with Hebrew. These touts certainly are entrepreneurial, heh.
Anyway, the travel to Kathmandu took around 24 hours (of continuous travel), and the final stretch involved sharing a 8-seater with 7 other backpackers. Two of us from England, an Italian couple, an Israeli couple, one American guy and one dutch. We got on so well we all stayed at the same hotel for the first few nights in Kathmandu and hung out together. The Italians were full of crazy stories about how Silvio Berlusconi has basically stitched up Italian politics. It’s actually mind-boggling.
Last night we went to a massive Jewish New Years party at the Radisson, and once that finished early (I told them that Jews had nothing on Sikhs for partying), we went to the casino downstairs after for free food and alcohol. I’m savouring my time away from the computer as you can tell.
I’m leaving my fellow back-packers behind in Kathmandu – which is full of them – and moving on Thursday morning to north India, and then to Lahore and Karachi (I doubt I’ll see any Israelis there) a few days after. Kathmandu has charm and character in spades, and its no wonder so many people want to come here to travel, stay or volunteer. I haven’t read as much this time as last time, primarily because I’ve had more company and partied more. But hey, its supposed to be a holiday! Once I get to the US in a few weeks time I’ll be in politics hell (or heaven, depending on how you see it). Adios!
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