|One of my favourite images of Machhapulchre or Fishtail, taken as we trudged up to Annapurna Base Camp.|
Bus from Kathmandu to Pokhara: Please bring back the Yeti!
We had been booked onto the Baba Adventures bus from Kathmandu to Pokhara into seats on the right hand side of the bus to give us the best/worst view of the valley. As we settled into our seats they handed out bottles of water and the local rag, The Himalaya Times to read on the 7 hour journey.
It had a poignant and very relevant headline: Bus crash kills 40 and there was an interview with the sole passenger who had survived because he had taken the trouble to travel on the roof. This enabled him to jumped off into a ditch in the nick of time and live to tell the tale. Under this article was a related feature about how bus deaths in Nepal account for more deaths than illnesses! My only thought, apart from looking for a roof hatch, was why didn't the newspaper editor bury this news and bring back the yeti on an as needed basis?
I grabbed Raz’s iPod and cranking it up; listening to ELO’s Mr Blue Sky and Ellie’s Gould’s Your Song as we climbed up the first high pass. An annoying Italian girl, who Magi thought looked like Emma Watson, keept doing yoga in the aisle - hanging from the overhead luggage shelf and letting her back drop into everyone’s space below.
We saw women carrying hedges on their backs, wobbly “lemur” bridges (named after the plank and rope bridge from the Lemur enclosure at Paignton zoo) and baby goats tethered by the roadside. What I thought must be the world’s biggest living bamboo structures turned out to be massive swings that have been put up for Diwali.
In the evening we met our guide, Tolsee, for tomorrow’s trek to Annapurna Base Camp.