Nepal’s green, green grass of home

Posted on 10 Jul 2018

The days have become too long and too short. I’m ready for the walk to be over but every day there is a new valley, forest or mountain that calls to be explored and there’s not enough time.

We climbed steadily from Jumla out of the narrow streets where motorcycles honk for no reason, where vendors wait outside their shops for customers as kids play on the street, and where policemen are out and about patrolling on foot.

We steadily move away from the noise and grime of a city trying to pull itself into the modern world, up and up into the Nepal that hasn’t changed yet.

We stop for lunch in a green meadow shared by cows with calves and mares with young foals. The sun is out and you’d never know there was drenching rain only a few days before. The afternoon is more of the same, but now we are high enough that the forest has changed to pines, mixed with wide open mountainsides of green grass and well-worn grazing trails from the cattle and sheep that live here.

We sit and have a snack in the afternoon, after camp has been set up. I’m torn between crawling into the tent for a rest and some reading, or wandering into the hills to see what I can find. The pull to wander wins out and I start slowly up the grassy hill across from camp. It’s steeper than it looked from below but the late afternoon sun feels good as I make my way higher.

There is no breeze and the clouds are big billowing cells in the distance. I’m headed for the top of the ridge to see what's in sight.

Above me, a herd of sheep wander over the ridge I’m heading for, slowly making their way down from a day on the mountain. The man with the sheep stares down at me probably wondering why anyone would come up here without their herd.

As we get closer I decide to go say hello and he quickly comes my way happy to have someone visit. We exchange greetings and have a conversation where neither of us understand a word of the dialogue. I ask to take a picture and he proudly poses.

As I motion to the beautiful landscape, he waves toward the top of the ridge and leads the way. We crest the top and he shows me the view from his “office” on the mountain, another stunning view of Nepal.

The jagged green mountains fade into the distance with a few grassy knolls where I can make out the white sheep that look like snowflakes on the grass.

We smile at each other and say our goodbyes and I find a nearby rock to sit on for a few minutes and drink in the view.

Nepal, I love you.

Up next: Rara Lake and Points West

We have a little over two weeks of trekking before we head to Kathmandu and then home. We’re looking forward to seeing the mountains, rivers and villages of western Nepal. So far, they have not disappointed.

As Bob Marley said, “Love the life you live. Live the life you love.”

'Til our next post,
Vince, Ken, Mar and Bikash

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