It’s been three days since we arrived in Nepal. The airport was an adventure in and of itself. The mixture of standing in line to get our visas, waiting for our bags, and navigating our way through a sea of unmoving people all trying to exit/enter through one door was a great welcome to Nepal. On top of that, Rachel made an announcement on the loudspeaker to locate Anna (W.), only later to find her waiting for us with the instructors. Cate, aka mom, was freaking out since she was our travel leader. It didn’t help that once we all safely arrived on the bus, another student realized they misplaced some important documents. Luckily they were found.
Although we did didn’t exactly have a seamless beginning, once we arrived to the Dhulikhel Village Resort, things started to fall into place. We were all shocked by our beautiful view of the Kathmandu Valley juxtaposed with the striking snow-peaked Himalayas. It literally looks like a green screen.
So far out Orientation days have been full of getting acclimated to the environment and to each other. We’ve been enjoying evening walks, morning workouts and delicious food. Our instructors, Rishi, Shanti, and Anna, are great. Today they took us to a very special place. We walked up what felt like a million steps that led us to Shantiban, a stupa. A stupa is a temple used to practice Buddhism or Hinduism. This stupa was home to a fifty foot Buddha. He and I talked for 45 blissful minutes, the high of my day for sure.
Shantiban translates to Peaceful Forest, which is the perfect name for what I was. This was our first time stepping onto a stupa, or even seeing one in person, and we are blessed we got to go.