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Trek View on Nepal: Himalayan Studies Gap Year Semester with Where There Be Dragons

Dhulikhel

Dear loved ones out there,

I am sending all of my light across the majestic Langtang Himalayan mountain range from which I am viewing as I write this. May it already have reached you by the time you are reading this. In this passage I wish it was possible to express the immensity of my gratitude for being here, what I’ve experienced thus far and for what is in store ahead, yet it isn’t; my gratitude is infinite.

My fellow Dragons travelers and I have been nestled in the village of Dhulikhel, northeast of Kathmandu for our orientation these past few days. Our time together has brought about many exciting things, and there has been an emphasis on establishing our group’s Sangha. In Buddhism a Sangha is a community of friends working together in order to bring about and to maintain awareness. The essence of a Sangha is awareness, understanding, acceptance, harmony and love. Together we have been forming our Sangha with deep roots to carry out for the rest of our three months.

Alongside creating a close group defined by love in the village, we have diligently been studying Nepali language and culture, setting goals and intentions and becoming aware. I have been making the best of friends who I must have been close to in another life! We have tea time three times a day and I’ve been building up my spice tolerance every meal by eating hot peppers- what an experience! Also, I’ve discovered that I enjoy food so much more because in Nepal we don’t eat with utensils, we eat with our right hand, which makes everything taste so much better!!

Today we celebrate the birth of Shiva in Maha Shivaratri, in the Hindu religion. Om Namah Shivaya! Villagers in the town walked to their temple to participate in puja and would wear their bindi on their third eye for the rest of the day. I’m looking forward to my urban homestay in Patan and my independent study project with an Ayurvedic practitioner next week! It’s positively exhilarating to be thrown into a culture and not know much of the language but it excites me and inspires me to keep learning! It’s the best when the locals laugh at you as you try to communicate! Soon I will be fluent, just you wait. 😉

As I’ve said to my amazing three instructors, this trip so far is overwhelming in a good way. My heart is SO full of love and gratitude it could burst! Thank you mom and dad for everything! The growth of my heart is infinite, and it has grown a whole awful lot and will just keep growing!! :))

Love always,
Missy