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

Senses

I immediately smelled spices and incense as we exited the Bhaktapur Guest House and made our way to a temple. I noticed bundles of straw tied with ribbon and strings of flowers decorating a few of the houses we passed. A woman on her porch holding a baby bundled in a blanket cried out to us, “Namaste!” and broke into a smile. I noticed a blue mat covered in white balls resting in the sun on top of a roof and two women inside the house creating these balls of what I believed to be string or fabric. My attention then turned to a long line of soldiers running up a hill and calling out directions. Their rifles startled me a bit, but I felt comforted by the shops with colorful plastic jars filled with treats and snack packets hanging from the ceiling. The higher we went, the clearer the air became and the cool, fresh scent of pine trees reminded me of hikes back home. It’s crazy to me that I can have flashbacks of home in such a foreign place and I wonder if these sights, smells, and feelings will ever become familiar.