Wednesday, April 20, 2005

time standing still...

I had planned to use these few days between trekking and my flight home up at the Last Resort, a tranquil little place out of the Kathmandu Valley where such relaxing and rejuvenating activities as bungee jumping, canyoning and rafting can be undertaken.

While I am certainly not interested in bungee, or, for that matter, some other weird jumping off high thing whilst being attached to a rope (save the bouncing around for ages afterwards), I would thoroughly enjoy canyoning - essential, rappelling or abseiling down into a canyon, swimming, dossing around, and then rafting/canoeing out - and really wanted to give rafting a go whilst in the rafting capitol of the world!

However, due to circumstances out of my control, i have been unable to fulfil these last ambitions of Nepal. Firstly, I wanted to stick around and play tour guide to a couple of the others who finished the trek with me and who hadn't seen much of Kathmandu beforehand. Secondly, having left a few bits and pieces with out trekking company in Kathmandu (namely my laptop, passport and plane tickets...), I was reluctant to leave for more fun and frolics before relocating my valuables (so to speak). Today, I finally have my laptop back, though no passport and tickets. I am reliably informed, however, that they will be brought to my hotel when someone comes to pick me up to take me to the airport for my flight - at little bit last minute for my liking, but there is no arguing with these people! And thirdly - I am simply too ill to move very far from a toilet; I know - not a nice concept - but brutal honesty is my middle name, as most of you, no doubt, know. Oh yeah - and fourthly (not sure I've got that high before!) - I leant my wifi card from my laptop to a local bar owner who was trying to set up a free wireless access point in his pub, and I am still waiting to get it back...

So there it is. I'm stuck in Kathmandu. Up until today, however, this had been a pleasure as I had been showing Matt (friend from trekking) and Ruth (random chick we met in the Hotel) around the major sights. Did the regular ones again, and finally managed to visit Pashupatinath - a religious site (aren't they all - I am just about templed out already!) down on the river, where they cremate their bodies.

I say "cremate" - what I actually mean is BURN - they do so in open fires on little "pires" by the side of the river. When all is done, a little man with a stick and a bucket chucks the ashes into the river - the same river where people are having full on baths and washing their clothes just metres away. Seriously - I have photos to prove it! Very peculiar.

Matt and I were rather unimpressed with Pashupatinath. The buildings are all a bit dilapidated, the gardens are rather unkempt and there is litter, detritus and filth just about everywhere you look. I can't imagine St. Paul’s in London would be very popular if we let it get such a state!

These last few days in Kathmandu have been mostly spent, despite the above, panicking about my return to the UK: not only have I got finals to worry about (and believe me, worrying I am), I have received a torrent of emails about various matters which need dealing with NOW! Mostly, it seems i have missed the deadline to "apply to sit my final exams". I couldn't believe it when I read this email - who wouldn't want to sit their final exams having spent 5 long years building up to them?! I think more the point is the Registry - sorry, that should be Education Directorate - have forgotten who is doing an extra year and who should be graduating this year! There are also numerous bits of work and assessment forms that need handing in, most of which i haven't done yet, and without which I will not be allowed to sit my finals.

Then there is all the graduation ceremony nonsense I am supposed to have done already (I have actually done all this online now, but it doesn't seem to make me feel much better>>>). I have to pay 250 quid just to sit for hours and wait for my name to be called, trudge to the front, all embarrassed, and collect a fake scroll of paper, all whilst wearing silly clothes I have to pay MORE to hire. And what's more - my parents are going to be there! It's all for them I suppose - they have waited quite a while and paid an awful lot to get me this far. And they are just chomping at the bit to finally complete their embarrassing photo collection - I'm sure, as I type, Mother is clearing a space next to my Brother's graduation photograph, and simultaneously thinking what she's going to wear (not possible just to do one thing at once, you see!)

Ho hum. I suppose I can console myself with the thought that hopefully (touch wood) it will all be over in just a few months and I can piss off on holiday before the trudge of the Real World and a Job kick in in August.

And on that merry note - I'm not nearly as miserable as I make out, you know (I'm actually quite fun really) - I shall toddle off!

Maybe more later - i have a good few hours to while away in the departure lounge at Abu Dhabi...!

TFN (is anyone actually still reading this -please leave comments!)

Nx

102 Comments:

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Er, I think you'll find that's graduation photographs thank you very much :)

PS, insist on having a package of photos so that you get some with the dere parents in it as well as one on your own...

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