Nepal #9: Our Brief Encounter with a Nepali Bridal Party

We have officially been in Nepal for one week today!! Time sure flies when you get to spend your days with baby monks :))) We got up at around 6 again and went for our little morning walk. We stopped for tea, read for a while and then went on a hunt for an ATM to get out some money because we are heading into the mountains for the weekend!! After subjecting ourselves to potential bank fraud, we stopped quickly in a store to pick up painting supplies for the monks and also some pringles and water to keep us going over the weekend. 

When we headed home for lunch, our homestay dad (his name is Diti) told us that we didn’t need to go teach at the monastery today and that it would be better for us to leave for our trip a bit earlier to make sure we were travelling in the day time. We were both a little sad not to be going to the monastery because we were so excited for our painting day, but we’re excited to do it next week once we’re back from our trip. This weekend we’re heading to a little mountain village called Nagarkot which is about 2 hours outside of Kathmandu. We had initially planned to only go up to Nagarkot for one night, and we’ve booked this sick little hostel to stay in tomorrow, but we decided it would be worth our time to go up for an extra night so Diti arranged for us to stay our first night in this hostel that his old friend owns. 

 Diti called for a car to take us up, so after lunch we packed up our things and headed off. The combination of Kathmandu’s perpetual rush hour and being jammed into the back of a very old tourist van during the peak high daily temperature allowed our bodies to experience the highest levels of temperate discomfort we have ever felt, to the extent where we had to hang our pants out upon arrival in Nagarkot to to allow the sweat to dry.

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The drive up the mountain was absurdly bumpy.  As Diti put it, it was “just like a disco” minus the gender segregation (the smell of sweat was definitely still present.) We arrived in Nagarkot at around 3pm and Diti took us to our first hostel called Hotel United, where we met his friend. Diti said the car would cost us 2500 Rupees each (about 25 dollars) which we were a little cheesed about because we had read in a guidebook that a taxi from Kathmandu to Nagarkot should cost 25 dollars total. But honestly we were just relieved to arrive in one piece, and Diti said there is a bus which can take us back down on Sunday which will only cost us 60 rupees (60 cents) each. We quickly dropped our things in our hostel room and headed out to wander around the town. 

After being in the city for a week, we were both surprised how much of a relief it was to get away from the loudness and craziness of Kathmandu. It was still pretty hazy, but the air quality was definitely better than in the city, and with the trees and mountains it kind of felt like we were at a campsite in Canada. We walked around for a bit and ended up finding the hostel that we are staying at tomorrow night, called Hotel at the End of The Universe. We decided to check it out and OH good lord was it cute. Coffee tables made of tree trunks. Wooden huts overlooking the mountains. Toilet paper in the washrooms. The definition of a vibe.

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The patio was so beautiful and the weather was so nice that we decided we would just stay there for the rest of the day so we could be there to watch the sunset. 

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We grabbed some seats overlooking the mountains and ordered our first authentic Nepali beer (one singular beer because beers here are 750 mL and 8%). Then we just hung out for the evening, shared our single beer and Pringles and watched the sunset while a Russian man sitting behind us serenaded his family with his guitar rendition of Stairway to Heaven. Utter Bliss.

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After the sun went down we went in to the restaurant for dinner and it was sooo good. We shared these spiced vegetable fritters to start, and then Sam had chow-mien and I had a veggie curry with chapati. After dinner we headed back to our hostel full, sleepy and ready for a peaceful night sleep away from the bustle of big city.

Oh how we were mistaken!! On our way up to bed we saw that a big group of Nepali ladies had arrived at the same hostel as us. We weren’t super sure why they were there, but it kind of looked like a bridal party? They were just settling down for dinner so we just waved at them and headed up to bed. We had been sleeping for about an hour when we were woken up by banging and shaking on our door. At first we thought someone was trying to rob us of our valuables (pringles) but then we realized that it was the Nepali bridal party, and they had mistaken our room for one of theirs. I tried shouting “this isn’t your room”, but after they continued to attempt to enter the room for literally four minutes, we realized they weren’t getting the message. Sam got out of bed to open our door and was met by the face of an extremely flabbergasted Nepali lady. Realizing we were not part of her crowd, she ran off without saying a word.

Just as we began to settle down again after the bizarre interruption, the hostel across the road decided to transform into a nightclub. We can’t be sure but we think the Nepali bridal party probably had something to do with it. So the ladies danced their sandals off into the little hours of the next morning, while we lay wide awake in our beds listening to a Nepali rendition of Eminem’s “Love the Way You Lie” on repeat from across the street. Tranquility at last. 

-Sarah

Sarah Clark