last day in kathmandu

Thursday, January 24:  On this, my last day in Kathmandu, I decide I will just wander around the streets of Thamel and do some shopping, have a nice lunch, check out the bookstore, take pictures, and top the day off with a traditional dinner and entertainment.

First I start with a meditative moment in the courtyard of Kathmandu Guest House.

the meditative Buddha in the courtyard of Kathmandu Guest House

the meditative Buddha in the courtyard of Kathmandu Guest House

As I walk out to the street from Kathmandu Guest House, I meet this kind young man who wants me to hire his rickshaw for a little tour.  I tell him I will meet him here in about two hours.

My rickshaw driver

My rickshaw driver

I can do a lot of damage shopping for 2 hours.  I buy a couple of beautiful necklaces, two yak wool blankets, a paper lantern, a colorful embroidered bag, and a bunch of books including Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda (which the Indian guy I met last night highly recommended to me), The Guru of Love, Royal Ghosts and Arresting God in Kathmandu, all by Samrat Upadhyay, and a Buddhist Chanting CD.  Luckily I bought that backpack in Pokhara so I can carry all this loot home. 🙂

I do some more wandering around before the designated meeting time for the rickshaw tour.  This is what I see.

Ohm.

Ohm.

Streets of Thamel

Streets of Thamel

Colorful shops in Thamel

Colorful shops in Thamel

Balloons anyone?

Balloons anyone?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

colorful yarns

colorful yarns

old wood carvings

old wood carvings

busy streets

busy streets

paper lanterns

paper lanterns

Finally I meet my rickshaw driver and he takes me outside of Thamel to where the real Nepalis live and work.  Thamel is quite “done up” compared to the rest of Kathmandu because it’s a tourist area.  The rest of Kathmandu is more chaotic and quite a bit more ratty.

colorful rickshaw

colorful rickshaw

a little temple hidden away

a little temple hidden away

a lady and her bedding

a lady and her bedding

colorful bedding and doors

colorful bedding and doors

hangin' out waiting for a fare

hangin’ out waiting for a fare

Ohm.

Ohm.

the red monkey god

the red monkey god

another hidden temple with bright yellow doors

another hidden temple with bright yellow doors

temple

temple

me in the rickshaw

me in the rickshaw

fruits for sale

fruits for sale

a temple with guard dogs

a temple with guard dogs

After our little tour, I grab a lunch of momos and fresh banana juice at The Roadhouse Cafe.

Ohm.

Ohm.

Momos for lunch

Momos for lunch

my lunch spot

my lunch spot

Finally I go back to my room and take a rest for a bit.  I have now started reading Arresting God in Kathmandu, a book of short stories by Nepali writer Samrat Upadhyay.  This is more appropriate for Nepal than the other book I’ve been occupied with this entire trip, What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt.   I finished this book yesterday evening.

another colorful rickshaw

another colorful rickshaw

I decide to go out to Thamel House, an old townhouse with a covered patio garden that serves traditional Nepali and Newari food.  I order the full course vegetarian set.  The fixed price meal includes the following:

ENTRY:
Alu Tareko (Potato fried and prepared in traditional way)
Momo (steamed dumpling with minced vegetables)
Suruwa (soup ~ typical Nepali soup)

MAIN COURSE:
Sada Bhuja (plain boiled Basmati rice)
Kalo Dal (lentil prepared in iron pot with heated purified butter, garnished with herbs)
Mis Mas Tarkari (seasonal mixed vegetables cooked in local style)
Alu Tama Bodi (fermented bamboo shoot, beans & potato unique flavored and sourly in taste)
Paneer ko Tarkari (cottage cheese cooked in a special way)
Chyau ko Tarkari (mushroom curry cooked in a traditional way)
Saag (Seasonal fresh green leaves boiled and sautéed with spices)

DESSERT
Shikarni (Thick yogurt whipped and mixed with dry nuts and cinnamon powder)

Traditional Nepali food

Traditional Nepali food

While I savor each and every morsel of this delectable meal, I watch some Nepali ladies do a song and dance routine.

Entertainment at Thamel House Restaurant

Entertainment at Thamel House Restaurant

Finally, I return to Kathmandu Guest House where I pack up my things for an early flight tomorrow back to Muscat.  Goodbye, Nepal.  I don’t know when, or if, I’ll see you again. 🙂

good night and farewell to Thamel

good night and farewell to Kathmandu

Advertisements