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Date: 12-11-04
Subject: Dewali - Festival of Lights

Namaste,
Ten days on the Sun Kosi river over and just popping
into Kathmandu before we head of to my newly adopted
brother's for the big festival. Am I being too veg?
Sorry, so much has happened in the last ten days and I
struggle as usual to find the most important points.
Every moment seems to bring on something new.
The river trip was incredible. With giant rolling wave
rapids, villagers from many casts starring, touching,
admiring, the strangeness of us, and landscape full of
monkeys, thatch huts, tropical to dry. this is just
what surrounded us.
Had a great crew from Australia and Sweden, good
connections, good friends.
There was also a huge group of Russians. They were
mostly interesting because, well...they were so very
Russian. So many stories tied to them and their
alcoholic, meat loving ways. In the end they all
lived.
Then there was our Nepali crew who can not be thought
about without a smile. The finest men full of charm,
humor, strength and an ability to get shit done. We
had great veg. food and hot tea daily(until the
Russians insisted we get a pig..like I said, another
story).
We all became very close to say the least. Nothing
like being stuck together for ten days to get you
there. Even the 27 hour bus ride at the end was one of
the best long bus rides I have ever had.
With all good things there is the shit side of it and
I mean that literally.
Twenty nine people all living out of the river are
bound to feel the effects of water that actually
supports the lives of thousands. I got really sick a
few times. Everyone had crampy stomaches here and
there, but I was sick, only for a few days though.
I ended up taking some antibiotics when i was really
worrying about what kind of dysentery i had.
The Antibiotics worked like a charm. i am regaining my
strength then heading off tomorrow to raft down an
even more sewer like river before the festival.
One of the guides decided that I am his Dee Dee, big
sister, the festival happens to honor Dee Dee's, So I
must go to be properly honored.
The streets are lined with candels, the buildings hung
with marigolds, when walking every step is with care
trying to avoid a freshly made mandala. Everyone is
singing, the animals are painted...it is going off
around here.
It should be really interesting. My brother, Kodgi,
and his wife have been married since she was 13 and he
was 15. They have two babies and live in a small
village east of here. These people love their
festivals.
Driving back from the river we went through some of
the most maoisty areas so far. Road blocks everywhere
with soldiers lining the way.
People are bing killed every day, different casts of
Nepali are being forced to join the Maoist.
As i sat in the bus watching life pass I kept thinking
about how crazy it is that I am in a country fighting
a war, and if I did not want to see it, I could
probably get away with only thinking the road blocks
were a hassel. If I only wanted to enjoy rather than
know, I could.
I did not know who the president of the united states
was until we came into the large village at the end of
the trip and villager came running out saying Bush!
Bush!
The world's people are very sad...It seems that no one
is surprised however. We all knew an evil power that
great is under no circumstances simply going to step
down.
In a few days we will be starting our trek to Everest
base camp. I am getting stronger by the minute,
although my muscles have gotten to get lazy again..
I pray you are all well and happy.
There is a beeping coming from somewhere in this shop
and i am on the edge of going crazy.
I love you, namaste

 

 

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