In Nepal we spent 29 days and for 9 days we were hiking to Everest Base Camp. Every night on the way to Base Camp we would stay in a very simple lodge and as you hike higher the lodges get more simple. The rooms in the lodges are very small and have one to three beds. If you are lucky the room might have a washroom inside but usually the washrooms are shared with everyone else. While you’re hiking you’ll see lots of yaks and porters carrying hikers’ gear. Some porters can carry 80 to 100 kg!
You also see lots of prayer flags and prayer wheels. Prayer wheels are a cylinder shape with prayers written on the wheel. When you spin the wheel people believe that the prayers float into the air and bring good luck. Prayer flags are almost the same, except the prayers are written on flags and the wind carries the prayers into the air.
Three quarters through the trek I caught a cold and fever. I was coughing and felt really dizzy and tired. The next morning I felt a little bit better so we kept on walking. Three days later I felt sick again and I had a cold and fever. Luckily the women who ran the guesthouse where we were staying was very nice and helped me when I was sick. She gave us electric blankets and a neck warmer to keep warm. There was a retired nurse living beside the guesthouse and she called her over to help me. The nurse checked me and told me what to eat and what not to eat. The nurse also said that if I don’t get better in the next couple of days we would have to take a helicopter back. Unfortunately, I didn’t get better and we ended up taking a helicopter. My dad had to call our insurance company to send a helicopter to pick us up. The helicopter took 3 hours to pick us up but it seemed much longer since I was sick. On top of all that I had an ear ache. When the helicopter finally arrived, when we were getting in, we had to duck so the propeller doesn’t chop our heads off. When we were up in the air, my ear ache was even worse because of the pressure. In the helicopter it was very loud and we had to wear a headset to make it less noisy. With the headset you can also talk to other people through a microphone. Instead of flying straight to Kathmandu (the capital of Nepal) we stopped at Lukla to refuel on gas. Once we arrived in Kathmandu, and ambulance took us to the hospital. Once we got to the hospital they took blood tests and x-rays. After that they took us to our room in the hospital and the doctor said that we had to stay three nights just to make sure my cold gets better. We were surprised that we had to stay overnight, because we thought it would be a quick checkup and then we’d leave. Luckily the rooms were really nice, with a private bathroom, a tv and a big bed. The food was also very good. It was really boring staying in bed for three days. The nurse would come in three times a day to give me medicine. The medicine didn’t taste that bad but it still didn’t taste good.
Once I got out of the hospital we had ten more days in Nepal. We visited two stupas: one named Swayambhanatha and the other named Boudhanath. Boudhanath Stupa is the biggest stupa in the world located just outside of Kathmandu. We got to the stupa in the afternoon and watched the sunset behind the stupa. The other stupa we visited was Swayambhanatha. Swayambhanatha is nicknamed the monkey temple because of the monkeys that sit on the temple. A stupa is shaped like a dome and at the top of the dome there is a point. Around the point there are 13 rings. A stupa also has 4 sets of two eyes on each side. Most stupas are white with a gold point but the colours can vary.
To make up for some of the hike we missed to Everest Base Camp we went to Pokhara to do another hike called Australian Camp. Australian Camp is a very short hike and it only took us one day to hike up and another day to hike down. Along the path to Australian Camp you see barely any hikers compared to Everest Base Camp. Once we got to Australian Camp we found a guest house to sleep in for the night. At the guest house there was a really cool swing made of bamboo. The swing was talk with a skinny seat and my brother and I loved playing on it.
At Everest Base Camp it’s really weird because at daytime it’s hot enough to wear a t-shirt but at night it’s so cold you need to wear layers and layers of clothes. After Australian Camp we still had 4 days in Pokhara and we visited the World Peace Pagoda. The World Peace Pagoda is a stupa built by Japanese monks to symbolize world peace. To get to the top you need to climb 500 to 600 steps. Once you get to the top you see an amazing view of the Annapurna mountain range.
While in Pokhara we did a singing bowl chakra meditation session. We had a private class so it was just the four of us and the two men that were running the session. The Tibetan people believe that there are 7 chakras in your body and your energy flows through your chakras. If there’s blocked energy in your chakras, it can lead to illness and it’s important to keep your energy flowing through your chakras. Each chakra in your body has a different vibration. The singing bowl meditation relaxes you by realigning your chakras. Once your chakras are realigned, the energy can start to flow and you feel very relaxed. At the session I felt so relaxed, I felt as I was floating. When they put the singing bowl very close to your body you can feel the vibration of the singing bowl. When the session was over, I opened my eyes and everything looked so blurry. I was sad to leave because it was so relaxing the sound of the singing bowl sounds so cool.
A singing bowl is a Tibetan instrument that comes in all different sizes. Some are as big as a stool and some are as small as a teacup. Each bowl makes a different sound depending on the size and the metal it’s made of. The singing bowl has the shape of a bowl and is made of metal. The singing bowl is played by rubbing a wooden mallet along the rim of the bowl. By doing this you can create a beautiful sound. Singing bowls are used for medication because of the relaxing sound. Singing bowls can be made of one medal and others can have as many metals as you want. Singing bowls that are made with many metals are ususally more expensive than those made with less. Some of the metals that singing bowls are made of include copper, brass, silver, zinc and gold.
Our time in Nepal was really fun (except the getting sick part!). I thought it was really cool to see Mt. Everest in person and I also loved seeing all the yaks along the way.