Day 59 – Location: Bandipur; Nepal.
I had an awful night’s sleep with a dodgy tummy and unable to catch more than a few hours. As soon as the horrible hawking of the elderly people in the building began at around 4am, I couldn’t sleep at all. It sounded like they were literally hawking their guts up, and they’d revisit the toilet at regular intervals to do it – you could tell they were doing it in the loo as it echoed! After breakfast we walked around the rest of the backstreets we hadn’t explored, nice and quiet. Bandipur is the most quiet and chilled out place I’ve been to in Nepal, even compared to the mountains.
We hopped on top of a local bus heading back down to Dumre. This time I got the good view. It was a lot faster coming down and we soon reached the town. I was sitting in the hole of the spare tire this time so it was fairly comfy. Anja had to return to work tomorrow, so we said farewell and went our separate ways, from here she could catch a bus back up to Besisahar. I got on a local bus to Pokhara and even got a seat with decent leg room. Unfortunately for my knees, it wasn’t to last, as at another town on the way back we got transferred to another bus and I had to sit on the back row. I couldn’t sit in one seat because there wasn’t enough room for my legs, so I was squeezed in with my knees scrunched against the hard seat in front, as different locals came on and off for the next few hours. At one point I had a kid in my lap, it was that busy!
I arrived in Pokhara bus station and got a taxi to Lakeside. I’d decided to come here so I could report my stolen things with the tourist police, and also I was interested in paragliding before leaving Nepal – having been let down in Bandipur. I found a hotel and as I needed to head back towards Kathmandu to sort out the passport, I booked a package tour to Chitwan national park which is in that direction. Chitwan is a jungle/long grass environment with elephants, rhinos and even the occasional tiger. I also booked a tandem paragliding session for the next morning. It’s really cheap in Nepal compared to other countries. I spent the rest of the day investigating the passport replacement process and catching up on my photos and blog. I also phoned the British embassy in Nepal to find out what to do about my stolen passport. The helpful lady at the British consular told me I’d need the police report, then I could come to their office in Kathmandu to arrange what to do next about getting a temporary replacement or apply for a full one. I told her I’d pop in within the week to sort it out. I still had a valid visa for two weeks so there was no urgency at the moment. I spent the rest of the day chilling out in a restaurant.