Pokhara is the gateway to one of the best trekking locations in the world – the Annapurna range.
Unwilling to go on a long walking trek, Richard and I were travelling to Pokhara to experience a bit of rural Nepal and to get out of Kathmandu, a city that had trapped us within its sprawling bounds.
Richard had quickly become the most popular person within Kathmandu; on a first name basis with the street hawkers, street urchins, rickshaw drivers and taxi fiends. Unable to say ‘No’, his better nature was well-and-truly been taken advantage of.
Richard and I had agreed he would buy our hashish from the street hawkers, and while Richard relaxed in his hotel-room bath, I slowly sunk into my shell, venturing deeper and deeper into my cocoon.
It was time to get out and get back onto the tourist trail.
Which brought Richard and I to Pokhara, by bus, and early the next morning we were standing on the top of some hill staring out at a sunrise over a Nepalese rural valley. We were back to nature, away from the crumbling world that had engulfed us, separated us from our fellow man and made us feel hollow inside.
But we still had our hashish and by lunch-time we were back in our separate hotel rooms sleeping off the early morning exercise.
Dreaming of snakes and their charmers, memorising by the side of the lake they were enticing me to enter my hand into my pocket, open my wallet and extract some cash.
Come forward bald stranger, extend out your open palm laden with Nepalese rupee and offer some part of yourself to the gods of self-sacrifice.
But what we give we may need once again...
And with that I awoke in a cold sweat.
In the future when I check the disc I have transferred the photos from the memory-card of my camera onto, I will find three photos of some misplaced Nepalese woman I do not recognise. In the interim I will have deleted many of the photos of Tibet from the camera’s memory-card.
It is payback for previously disrespecting and taking photos of the crawling-on-the-ground Tibetan pilgrims.
That I am sure of ... karma sure can be cruel.
But been stoned on hashish while I was at the Pokhara internet café transferring my photographs onto disc probably did not help.