It is over cast today, the start of it atleast. Awake early for a 9am meeting about our trek, afterwards we met with ‘Akay’ and ‘B’, our Nepali tour guides, to discuss our day trip. We were going to Durbar Square, an ancient kingdom and city centre of Kathmandu then to a Money Temple.
As we set out on our trip at 10am, rush hour was in full swing. Until you’ve seen rush hour in Kathmandu, you haven’t seen rush hour. There are no lanes and no curbs. No lights, no stop signs, no nothing except the honking of horns. As our driver approaches another van directly infront of us at a full stop, for no reason, he darts out into the opposite lane and proceeds to start honking. The honking is neither for the displeasure towards the others drives selfish driving style or to warn warrn the pedestrians of his change in lanes. What he is honking for is to say ‘i’m coming, so get out of my way’. As our tour guide Akay, sitting in the front left seat, turns towards the back and starts to let us know about the upcoming kingdom, another van starts heading directly for us.
As all 10 of the passengers in the back hold our breath, hoping this game of chicken plays out in our favour, one of my fellow trekkers says ‘watch out’ as though he needed to tell the driver of our vehicle to pay attention to the road. ‘oh my god, im such an idiot’ he said immediately following his first comment. Our tour guide, sitting in the front left seat, is not the driver. All vehicles in Nepal are right hand drive. The van broke out in hysterical laughter.
The Durbar Square is nothing special. Great cultural experience, but nothing blog worthy.
When finished at the square, we head back out into the chaos of the traffic. Thankfully, today we have A/C. 40 minutes later we arrive at the Monkey Temple.
This temple is crawling with monkeys. From the driveway up the hill, to the ticket booth itself. Monkeys, monkeys, monkeys. The view from the top would have been incredible, except we can not see much farther than about 3km. The myst, the fog, the smog, I don’t know exactly what it is and I don’t think I want to find out.
As I sit in the outside patio of the restaurant of our guest house, sipping on what I thought was a redbull, I realize now it is a knock off known as Wild Buffalo. Same logo, same blue and read writting. I am not surprised one bit, afterall, it is Nepal.
I will leave you with a picture I took on my phone at the monkey temple. I need not explain it, as a picture is worth (more than) a thousand words.
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