Thursday, May 13, 2010

Nepal Travel Diary - Leaving

NAMASTE...I'm back. I can't believe its been a month since I've been back. It's taken awhile to settle back into normal life again and also to sort through my photos.

Where do I start....It was such an amazing trip. It was only short and sweet but worth every minute of it. So here goes....

I had a few days off before leaving which was just as well so that I could get the last few things I needed and get everything packed. As I hadn't been on a trek before it was abit hard to really know what was really necessary. I'd made email contact with Sally who was also going on the trek. We had lots of emails back and forwards about the gear we had and what we still needed to get. It had been a dream of mine to go to the Himalayas for a long time. So when the countdown began till I was leaving, I don't think I really believed it was all going to happen.

Finally the day I was leaving arrived. Duncan and Dylan came with me to Brisbane airport. The plane didn't leave until 11.55pm. I was so excited but also a part of me was scared. It was also the first time I was leaving my son for so long. I have to admit that when Duncan and Dylan left I had to go to the toilets and had a few tears before I pulled myself together and took off on my adventure.

I flew from Brisbane to Bangkok, with a 5 hours wait there, then Bangkok to Kathmandu. It took awhile to get my bag in Kathmandu airport. I was starting to thing that it had fallen into a black hole. Coming out of the airport was abit of a shock to the system. There were people everywhere holding signs up and I was confused as to where I had to go until I say a man jumping up and down with a bright orange World Expeditions sign. There were 3 other people from the trip there and we all got on a minibus and headed for the Radisson Hotel. Coming out of the airport there were police all lined up along the street with shields, batons and guns. What a great welcome! Apparently the Prime Minister was arriving on a flight.

Driving to the Hotel was a real experience. Cars, buses, rickshaws, people, motorbikes going everywhere, beeping there horns. It was absolute kaos with what seems to be no road rules at all. But the drivers are all so calm. I had my hands over my eyes a few times.

I was sharing a room with Sally at the Hotel which worked out really well. She had arrived a day earlier. I'll remember that on future trips as it would have been nice to have a day to settle in first before the trek started.

This was the view out of the window from our room on the 4th floor.

We met up with the whole group at 5.30pm. There were 9 of us - 3 from England and the rest from Australia. Bakesh our tour leader explained things to us over a drink. We ordered a Gurka Beer which was huge and ended up being the equivalent of about 2 1/2 glasses. We then all went out to a Cultural Restaurant for Dinner. We walked there. Our first experience of trying to cross the road was fun. We all ran into the middle, waited there until the next part of the road was clear, and then ran across the rest of the way. At the restaurant they put a red dot on our foreheads and we got to sample a variety of Nepalese food while watching dancing and singing. We caught taxis back to the Hotel and got our bags packed ready for the start of the trek the following day.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I fly to Kathmandu Tonight!!!!

Everythings ready for me to go. We drive to Brisbane this afternoon and my plane leaves from there at midnight. I fly to Bangkok where there is 4 hours before flying onto Kathmandu.

Its very exciting!!!

I've been emailing a few of the people going on the trip, which has been really good. I've kept in fairly regular contact with one of the people. So it was nice to send an email to her and say "See you in Kathmandu on Friday".

I'm a little bit nervous to. Its a big adventure for me. Its the first time overseas by myself, the first time I've gone on a trek and the first time I've been away from my son for more than a few days. Also there are those little doubts that come up in your mind about whether I will make it through the whole trek and whether I might suffer from Altitude sickness. I know its natural to feel these things.

But when I get on that plane, I'm going to take a deep breath, relax and let go of all this and go with the flow of the experience. (Well, that's the plan)It is going to be such an amazing adventure. I'm sure when I'm high up in altitude, with Everest and the other mountains all towering around, its going to be such a magical experience of feeling like being in the presence of the Gods. I can't wait to see how magnificent the Stars and Milky Way look.

Be back soon!!!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Change of Plans

Photo from World Expeditions website - Sherpa Everest Trek

I was very disappointed when I had a phone call to say that the trip I was booked on had been cancelled. Four people had pulled out and there weren't enough people to run it. Luckily there was an alternate trek going around the same time that was going to all the same places but also going further. It goes to Ama Dablam base camp which is at 4,800m in altitude.
So I'm now booked on this trip - the Sherpa Everest Trek leaving on 25 March. I'm still disappointed that Sorrel Wilbey wont be on the trip. But I'm very happy with where I'll be trekking. Also the trip is 2 days longer than the other one and cheaper. This trek will also be mostly camping.
I've been doing lots of exercise and walking. I've lost a little bit of weight and I'm starting to feel abit fitter.
Only 7 weeks to go!!!!!!!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Have Boots Will Travel!!!!!

Yay, I got my hiking boots today. It helped that they were on sale - not a cheap item to purchase. These are my new friends that I will learn to love. They feel really comfortable and I'm hoping I will still love them after a days trekking!! I have to start wearing them in abit.

With Christmas and the heat I haven't been wanting to do much training the past few weeks. Before Christmas I was doing at least 1 hours of exercise 5-6 days a week and my son was getting me to go on walks with him of a late afternoon. He also helped out with my training by insisting that I piggyback him on the way home when his legs got tired. He's abit heavy now he is 8 years old, so I couldn't carry him too far.

I lost 5 kilos before Christmas and then put a little bit of it back on. I'm nearly down to the weight I was before then. Sometimes I think I just have to look at food and I put on a kilo. I hate to think what size I would be if I ate McDonalds, Cakes and fatty foods!!
Anyway I'm determined to get serious and lose some weight and get fit before the trek. I've started doing Aqua aerobics 2 times a week which is a great workout. Also I'm going to plan to do an hour on the treadmill every day and go on walks when I can fit them in.
So that's the plan!!!!

Details of my Nepal Trip

When I was deciding to go to Nepal I was looking at brochures and thought I'd picked out a trek I wanted to do, but then I went looking on the internet at a few different companies. I then found the perfect trip with World Expeditions. It leaves at the end of March for 15 days. Its a fundraising trip for the Australian Himalayan Foundation and part of the money goes towards teacher training (something I'm interested in as I'm trained as a Primary Teacher). We trek for 7 days and camp. We also visit the first school and hospital that Sir Edmund Hilary built.

The thing that also makes this trip really special is that Sorrell Wilby is escorting it. Sorrell is an amazing woman. She rode a bicycle through Asia, walked across Tibet, she traversed the Himalayan Mountains and climbed all the major mountains in Africa. She wrote books on these trips and worked for Australian Geographic and on an Australian Travel TV Show called Getaway. I remember reading her books when they first came out and loved them and her sense of adventure. I never in my wildest dreams would have thought that I would be going on a trek with her. Its going to be wonderful talking to her and listening to her stories.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Beginning!!!

This blog has come about as I'm going on a trek in Nepal leaving on 28 March 2010. I wanted to have a blog just for my travels. I'm not sure if I will have too many followers but I'm mainly doing this so I have somewhere to post my lead up to my trip, my trip diary, photos and any further travels I take. Also if possible I'll try to post here at least once or twice while I'm away.

The blog is pretty basic at the moment. It will evolve in time. I'm enrolled to do a photoshop class in January so I'm hoping I'll be able to come up with a really good graphic for my header.

I named my blog "Travels beyond my Dreams", because for many years I've read many travel stories of others and gone on their journeys with them dreaming of what it would be like to be exploring many interesting and exotic places throughout the world.

In reality, the places I've visited overseas are the USA (which I love) and Bali. But there are many more places I want to go to. I could talk about all the things that might limit me from travelling like not enough money, time restraints, family commitments, work, etc, etc, etc. But instead I'm just going to go with the flow of life and aim to travel to some of the places I want to when I get the chance. So it could just be one trip, but I'm sure there will be many more to come as well.

It is also a significant trip for me as it is the first overseas trip I've taken by myself. Well its not really totally by myself as I'm linking up with a group trek once I get to Nepal. But its still a little bit daunting and I know that its going to make me feel good that I actually went and did it by myself.

I really admire all the young people of today who have so much confidence to go out backpacking around the world by themselves. Its what I would have loved to do in my 20's, but I didn't have the confidence to do it then. Anyway its never too late to do things and anyway I've only just turned 45, so that's not old - is it. (I suppose to a 21 year old it is though!) Well I'm just 21 with 24 years experience!!!

In my 30's I went through a stage where I wanted to challenge myself and do a whole lot of things that I'd wanted to do and hadn't before. So I went tandem skydiving, tandem hang-gliding, learnt to surf and learnt to dive. So I think I'm at a bit of a stage again where I want to let loose, have some fun and jump out of the routine of life for awhile.

So here I am - jumping out of my dreams and into the big wide world!!!!!!