Pokhara, On Second Thoughts I Kinda Like It!

I was a bit down on Pokhara the last time we were here but I’ve changed my tune. When we got back after the mountains it had a different feel to it. Or I had a different feel towards it. Whatever it was, I felt happier here, more at ease. More appreciative of the luxuries of life perhaps, like hot showers, fast WiFi and lattes. All those things we don’t really need but secretly prefer to have around, even when trying to have a “local” experience.

Ailsa & Ganga’s (I hope I’m spelling that right!) hotel, The Third Eye Inn is a great little haven for us. I relish the comfortable mattresses and the outdoor terraces to relax and write my blog on. I have a lot of writing to catch up on!

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I wander through Pokhara’s streets, checking out souvenirs and the people who pass me by. The foreigners interest me in particular – there are certain sets who seem to be drawn here. Not just the Trekkers and the Paragliders, but those coming seeking something…..deeper. They stroll past me in their earthy-toned natural fibres that appear never to have seen a washing machine. Their dreadlocked hair swept on top of their head with hemp bandanas as they walk on the streets with their dusty bare feet slapping the ground. It’s hard not to see a walking cliche as they drift past with a look of blissful serenity on their faces.

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Then there are the Adventurers. In equally dusty attire with layers of scarves draped over their figures, they drive past on their old Royal Enfield motorbikes. They are all tanned skin and tousled hair; the men bearded and weathered, but in a good way.  They know the lay of the land, they’ve been driving across this continent forever.

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And then there’s us with our two children, laughing and screaming as they run rampant up the street in front of us. What must they think of us oldies, eh?

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We wander along the lake side finding new spots to hang out in, Ben and Alex get their hair cut, I shop for T-Shirts we can ruin during Holi.

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Ben, the scab-faced boy. Variously obtained through face-butting a table edge and splatting himself on concrete.

We walk past cows chilling in the road, dogs chilling in the road, abandoned amusement parks and busy construction sites. I watch artists painting a mural in the alleyway beside our hotel, peeking down at their progress from above.

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Arnie!

Women work down by the water, washing clothes and hanging laundry out to dry in fields and along fences; young children run about playing chase and kicking balls.

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So yeah, I’m feeling happy here. The air is a perfect temperature for me – warm but not too hot and with a pleasant, refreshing coolness in the early mornings. Rain often falls in the evening and overnight; I sit on the balcony or lie in bed listening to that beautiful sound.  There’s a simple joy to existing in weather that seems made just for me. I don’t want to return to the UK with the snow and storms that are buffeting it.

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I’m on the roof terrace at The Third Eye and big, fat drops of rain begin to fall. Storm clouds are massing above me and the wind is picking up. The world is covered in a warm golden darkness.

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Birds pass over us, a flock of white birds flying from all directions to land on one tree. The clouds begin to glow with lightning sparking above and around us. Alex and the kids join me on the roof and we stand together and watch storm. Nature giving us a show to remember.

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Can you see the white birds topping the tree?

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After the main storm has passed we head back downstairs. All except Chloe who wants to stay up here, in the rain, alone. She’s happy here. I leave her with my scarf over her head as she cuddles her toy and sings to it in the silence and the darkness.

 

 

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