Day 12: Jhinnu Danda – Landruk
So it turned out that the crowd of twenty-somethings who arrived at the hot springs yesterday, beers in hand, were staying at our teahouse last night. The beer drinking continued well into the wee hours of the morning and I can assure you my tolerance for obnoxiously loud drunks is pretty fucking low. Drunk giggling and arguments heard through plywood thin walls on either side of us, the constant creaking and slamming of doors, and loud 2am Skype calls had both Alex and me pulling the grouchy old person routine and asking them to shut the fuck up, as kindly as we could on several occasions. So I’m not feeling overly well rested and I had no hesitation in letting Ben and Chloe be as loud as they wanted to when they woke up early this morning. Petty, I know.
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It’s been a long, mixed day. The scenery was beautiful, the temper tantrums were not. We left Jhinnu Danda and walked down to the river, crossing over a small wooden bridge. We followed the river’s path on the opposite bank, passing quickly through some landslide areas and walking by solitary homes until we reached a small tea shop. We stocked up on biscuits and Snickers bars because Bel told us this was the cheapest place for miles around and we’ll want supplies for tomorrow as it’ll be a more difficult day.
Fully stocked, we headed onwards and downwards, regularly passing porters carrying unimaginable heavy loads upwards. When we passed one who asked if we had any fruit because he was very hungry I didn’t hesitate to give him the one orange we had.
Soon we arrived at another bridge, this one considerably longer than the first! Prayer flags hung from its middle and standing there gave a wide open view down the river.
It was around about then that the fussing started. Legs were too tired, bodies were too hot, skin was too itchy. Ben touched a caterpillar and Chloe was convinced that he killed it, while Ben insisted he hadn’t. There was screeching and stomping from both parties, each insisting they were right. Don’t worry, the caterpillar survived the encounter, not that Chloe was easily convinced.
We came across a lovely looking stone beach but soon hordes of flies began to swarm us and had Alex and I wanting out of there on the double. The kids didn’t like the flies, but they also didn’t want to leave the beach. Complaints and tears on both accounts. We couldn’t win.
We carried on, swatting away flies and generally feeling annoyed with them and each other. We crossed a swaying bridge, the middle repair job looking particularly sturdy…
We took some pictures by a waterfall where Alex got annoyed at Ben for not letting us take a single picture without something in front of his face. Cue more crying and parental feelings of guilt for not keeping cool. At least we all look like we’re having fun, right?
Eventually Landruk came into view, and honestly it was none too soon. A few drops of rain were beginning to fall, I was feeling sweaty and itchy and at the end of my tether with everyone. I admit though, that walking into Landruk was a lovely experience. We passed terraced fields where ponies and buffalo grazed under looming dark clouds.
It’s a beautiful little village and to me, feels much nicer than the larger Ghandruk which sits across the valley from it. It was a hard end to the day with a steep stair climb the finish it off, but we made it without killing each other. Barely.
Bel brought us to Laligurans Guest House which is just the nicest little place. Rooms are cheap at $3 for a double so we treated ourselves and got two separate rooms. One for the kids, one for us. I think we all need a little space from each other. I jumped straight into a hot shower and felt so much better for it. Now, after a delicious meal of Daal Bhat we are ready to head off to sleep. Tomorrow we begin the Mardi Himal Trek and it starts with quite an ascent so we’d better get some sleep. Being the only guests here I think it’ll be a lot quieter than last night!
Distance covered: 6km
Hotel: Laligurans Guest House & Restaurant
Cost: $3 for a double room
Additional Info: Wifi & charging free, hot shower given for free. Super friendly owner.