So with the Annapurna swiftly behind us we reclined and relaxed in the serene town of Pokhara. Reclining and relaxing down, we focused more intently on the partying options available and settled for a rather silly week of boat-rides in the lake, cheap steaks and rum. Marcus took up a three-day shift behind one of the local bars, Spinks temporarily fell in love with said local bar’s barmaid (she left for Kathmandu), Stin went for a rather bizarre walk with a Bangladeshi bloke and I, of course, was above such infantile behaviour. Enough dobbing.
During the Annapurna trek I’d come across an Israei guy who had lent his gloves to his girlfriend and had subsequently lost the feeling in his fingers. Being the all-round good Samaritan that I am I granted him mine (of course I had a spare pair, if not the poor bastard would’ve gone cold) and upon arrival at the end of the trek, he was there with the gloves in hand ready for return. He then told us about a rafting trip he and his girlfriend ( called Hanny although we called her Honey which got a bit weird) were going on a rather exciting-sounding rafting excursion.
Cut to a travel agents in Pokhara and us four Brits were amongst a hive of rafting-frenzied Israelis. It tuned out there were 49 of them. They like to keep together. What followed was an epic three-day “cruise” down the Kali-Gandaki river. Beforehand I predicted a rather tame affair. By the second capsize, where all eight of our crew were left alone by our guide who had been flipped out the boat before us, I knew differently. People were thrown overboard by the huge swells, whole crews strewn across the river by walls of white water. At one point I was let on top of a turned-over raft, surfing like a amateur as I bounced off boulders of doom. It was awesome. At night we danced round campfires and sang “Israelis Can’t Dance” to an uninspired audience. They’re a unique bunch the Israelis. Very regimented when it comes to preparing a campsite (that’ll be the compulsory military service then) but the epitome of first-come, first-serve when it came to buffet o’clock.
Today we hit Chitwan national park in the south. On a rather sweaty trek we came face to face with a with rhino. It was massive and quite surprisingly, sporting a rather massive erection. We backed away nervously, hoping a willing rhino-ette would fill our spot.
Yesterday, on a rather more significant note to the trip, was a temporary good-bye to Spinks who has opted to stay in Nepal and climb a 6500 metre peak near Everest. It’s going to take him 3 weeks apparently so wish him luck. In the meantime we’ll be washing elephants tomorrow, heading to India and getting Marcus to Dehli via a few tactical pauses for photos and beer. Wish us luck too please.