A girl with carries things in a doko. The things, she wouldn’t say what, were sent by her grandfather, a hotelier at the top of the hill, to her grandmother, a hotelier at the down! The granddaughter was working as a messenger between the old couple!
23 October [Thangune Bhyanjyang]: It was a long day. We walked for almost 10 hours. We wanted to reach Chisapani but decided to stay here because, one, Chisapani wasn’t far from here and, two, here we found a nice hotel to stay. The trail was all downhill throughout the day, we descended about 1100 meters.
She studies at grade 6 in a local school near Golfubhyangyang. She sang the new national anthem for us while carrying the doko. Then it was Wagle’s turn to treat her by playing the ‘real’ anthem on his cell phone.
She is a tiny beautiful girl, also studious because she said she came in third position in the last exam.
Wagle tries to carry the doko the girl was carrying. He offered to exchange the doko with his lighter backpack for a few minutes but the girl firmly rejected the idea. “It was unbelievably heavy,” Wagle later said. “So heavy that my neck almost bent back. I am amazed to see such a small girl carrying the basket with such an ease.”
Wagle and Suraj eating Dal Bhat in Kutumsang.
I had already traveled this trail, from Thare Pati, four years ago when I did the Langtang Gosaikunda trek. I had come to Thare Pati crossing over the Gosaikunda pass (about 4600 meters), descending all the way down through Ghopte Bhir (where a Thai Air plane had crashed a few years back). All memories of that trip came back to my mind. Anu and I had met Stan where we were going down from the pass (somewhere around Ghopte Bhir). Our three-member-team had done an interesting trek all the way back to the Kathmandu valley.
The Trail side curd man. We bought two bowl of curd. Suraj almsot threw out but I loved it. Was far better than the jaand that the two porters were having inside the hut, I thought!
Wagle drinks curd while a porter takes his share of jaand (local alcohol). “Only this will help us carry that much load,” said the man pointing to the stuffs that he was carrying for a local shop in Tharepati.
The porter takes the best sip of jaand.
Wagle with umbrella as it rained briefly in the jungle. On the background is a small monastery near the jungle.
After the tough uphill trail the day before, it was a cake for us: the trail was easy and flat most of the times. We arrived at Kutumsang for lunch. (We stopped at the same hotel where I had stayed last time.) We met many kids and photgraphed them. Suraj was planning to do a story about kids on the trail side for Kopila, the children’s supplement of Kantipur, and he was interviewing some. At the end, we were really tired. The host at the Lama Guest House turned out to be an interesting person and I spent most of the evening talking to a German trekker (who was heading towards Tharepati) named Thomas (he said his friends at Bhaktapur have given him the Nepali name Aakash).
Wagle with kids in the Lama hotel. When he played the national anthem on his cell, a group of kids surrounded him to see the phone and hear the song.