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Photo by Kendall Marianacci, Nepal Semester.

Just Some Journal Entries, I Guess (1.0)

Before anyone reads this, I must insist that you read Izzy’s “Two and a Half Yaks” Yak. It is an absolute necessity to read it before, or at the very least after, reading this Yak. Similar to Izzy, I don’t really have any deep topics to go into at the moment. I had a few ideas, and was fairly excited to get them written out, but my creative juices simply don’t flow if I’m writing on paper, and they’ve slipped my mind at this moment. So I have some journal entries to share as a means of describing my experiences since my last Yak. I won’t do every one, because that would entail transferring almost 30 journal entries to this post, so I’ll just stick to the most notable ones. I will also be elaborating on many of them, since I write as I’m getting ready for sleep, meaning that they’re often brief. I’ll also cut it off after the day we returned to Jagat, and a second Yak will be made for the time after leaving Jagat for the second time.

3/24 – The bus ride to Jagat wasn’t too bad. Almost exactly 10 hours door-to-door. Izzy and I got to talk a good bit about the RP that he’s managed to get half the group to be a part of. I’m really psyched for it to start. Izzy doesn’t know how to set up a tent, but he’s good at handing me stuff I need. We make a good team. Also, according to the entire group, I have a very distinct laugh (which is true). It doesn’t always come out, but it has been (appropriately) named the “hyena laugh.” Tonight, as I was trying to go to sleep, I learned that I have a laugh brother. Someone working at the guest house we’re camping next to was laughing while I was laying in bed, and he had the hyena laugh. I heard Macy say from her tent “oh my god Julian’s laugh is so loud.” As my brother continued to laugh from the distance, I promptly responded “that’s not me.” Two people groaned from inside their tents. Part of me has to feel bad for what happened next. A minute or so later, the laugh came again from the guest house, and I found it funny enough that I started laughing, which quickly devolved into my own hyena laugh. Izzy, my poor roommate (as well as the rest of the camp), was stuck for a few minutes with this situation repeating a few times. Also, this sleeping pad is great.

3/26 – Today was hard. I talked a lot with Izzy, he’s finally letting me talk about Star Wars with him. We have before, but it’s been more me talking at him than anything else. He seems to be enjoying it more than he initially expected to. This bodes well for ways of passing time. Also, we started the Vampire RP (roleplay), and it went well.

3/28 – We went up to a cave where Monks go for retreat. It was beautiful. Beding is an adorable village, and the retreat spot looks out over the whole of it. The Himalayas stretch into the sky from behind the massive mountains lining the narrow valley we’re in. I meditated a little bit while up there, too, which was very nice. After getting back to camp, the group RP’d some more. Izzy has also started asking me questions about Star Wars, rather than just listening to my lessons. We’re gonna start setting the foundations for a SW themed RP. It stormed. Like, hard. We had to leave our tents and sleep in the dining room.

3/29 – I was navigator today, meaning that I had to lead the group along the path, use the map to figure out where to go, and set a good pace. If I’m being honest, I was Dictator today. Izzy was Leader of the Day, but he seemed content to let me steal that role from him and essentially take full control over the group. The storm left a good few feet of snow, which made today’s trek even more beautiful. It also allowed us to have a half hour-long snowball fight. I pegged Clarke in the back of the head with a massive one. It should have broken up in the air, but it stayed together until it hit him, and it exploded completely upon impact. It was truly perfect (to this day, he still believes Nick threw it. I’ll tell him after I finish typing this up). Once we made it to Na I literally skipped down the street because I was so glad to’ve arrived. After lunch we went up toward the glacial lake, but due to most of the group not feeling up for it and weather, we turned back. We had a great time playing cards and such tonight, then during dinner pretty much the entire group (primarily Nick, Dave, Macy, and Clarke) roasted me for a solid 40 minutes. I haven’t laughed as hard as I did in ages.

3/30 – The glacial lake was majestic. I climbed on some rocks, meditated atop them, built a waypoint (cairn), and took loads of photos. Maya caught up to us, too. Back at camp we played hella cards and Ludo (a board game). Kathryn taught Jake and I Spit. More importantly, Izzy and I finally got started on the Star Wars RP. I’ve finally gotten him pretty fully into SW as a whole. Great success.

4/2 – Today was a great day for food. Possibly the best series of meals we’ve had so far. We had the most PERFECT pancakes for breakfast. The trek down to Jagat wasn’t too difficult either. Izzy asked more questions about SW than he has in any one day so far (outside of when we RP). Lunch was more really good food. I learned a new Nepali card game called Jutta Batti. Then the kitchen crew made the best chicken we’ve had in Nepal, and even baked a cake for dessert. Also, at nightly debrief, other people did the first part of my check-in for me. They’ve made a meme out of the fact that I start every almost every check-in with “today was a great day, I loved today.” It was a fun moment. I loved today.