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

Happy Thanksgiving,

Last night I was sitting at the kitchen table while my amma made dinner, and reflecting on everything I love about Nepal. In the spirit of Thanksgiving and appreciating these things, both big and small, I think it is appropriate to share the list I made.

I love my snuggly Kathmandu bed

I love dahl baat: the variety, the saag, the alou, the yogurt, the little metal bowls they serve it all in

I love eating with my hands

I love walking through traffic

I love the beauty of prayer flags against any and all backgrounds (mountains, city, etc.)

I love how bringing apples or soap or sweets home is so very appreciated

I love how people don’t rush (usually)

I love the metal cups and plates that seemingly every home and restaurant has

I love the thousands of tiny shops selling bags of puffed snacks and shampoo packets and Ncell cards

I love tuktuks, I love vans, I love buses

I love the organized chaos that is Kathmandu

I love how saying “Namaste dai” or “Namaste didi” completely lights up a shopowners face

I love milk tea. In small cups. In big pots. Always. Forever.

I love random bus conversations with strangers in broken Nepali

I love hopping on and off moving buses

I love entering the whirl of people flowing around the Boudha stupa through the various back alleys (sorry ticket offices)

I love Seto Goumpa, the beautiful wisdom Rinpoche gives us, and his contagious laugh

I love how Rutna, my pottery mentor, pronounces “thick” and “thin”

I love my wool shawl, my kurtas, and my baggy drawstring pants I bought on the side of the road for 250 rupees

I love the stovetop pressure cookers everyone uses to make rice and dahl (although I will never love the aggressive hiss of steam that rockets out of them at random intervals)

I love how one is always greeted with an offer of chiyaa, even if only stopping by to say hello

I love Nepali food. Period.

Although I do feel that Nepali biscuits deserve their own special bullet point

I love how Nepali porters are constantly smoking pipes in between carrying massive loads of weight

I love how family and community is so important

I love how every Nepali amma will drop everything to make sure you’re okay

I love the plastic slippers designated for indoor wear in Kathmandu homes (but only for specific sections of the house, of course)

I love how bathrooms have their own specific pair of slippers, shared by the whole family

I love the luxury of a hot shower, whenever it comes around

I love washing my hair under cold, outdoor taps with the Himalaya behind me

I love how Nepali women pierce their left nostril

I love how people appreciate the little things

I love the blocks of mint green soap and dark green sponges everyone uses to wash dishes

I love how they call phones “mobiles”

I love the little head wiggle Nepali people do when they speak (and the fact that I subconsciously do it now as well!)

The list goes on and on and on. I have such a deep love for this country, these people, this experience. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone from Nepal 🙂