Wednesday, November 6, 2013
CD Diary 19 Oct 2013: Simon - Bhaktapur - Pashupatinath - Thamel
After a long night's sleep in the comfortable Radisson hotel, we woke up really hungry and groggy for something to eat. The clocks on our gadgets read 01:00 -- 24-hour room service it was, because hotel breakfast begins at 06:30. Hakka noodles and Chicken burger quickly devoured, we later regret to realise it was almost 05:00, Nepali time. Strange that our phones did not catch on the time-zone update like they always do. (There was a digital clock in the room which we grossly overlooked. Ah, live and learn.)
Later in the morning, there was a casual meeting with a couple of WWF colleagues. First agenda of the day: Simon's arrival to join us at the hotel, which was expected at 09:00. Little did we know that his flight to Kathmandu was delayed by 1.5 hours. Including the long wait at immigration's, the hotel guest pick up staff had been waiting for Simon's arrival for over 3 hours. The much-anticipated Mr Simon finally met with us outside the Tribhuvan airport, where we adjourned to Bhaktapur -- with colleague Madhav -- for lunch and a bit of sightseeing.
Lunch was in Palace Restaurant which provided us a nice view of the big and busy square below us. Bhaktapur was a place of importance in the past and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
With still a little bit of time left before Madhav had to leave us, he took us to Pashupatinath. It's a Hindu temple near the airport. We did not enter the grounds, however, and made our way back to Radisson.
Not to waste the 'leisure day', we converged with Simon again at the lobby at 16:00, and made our way to Thamel in a taxi.
After a brief mindless wander, it was a drink break for the three of us, followed by sending jet-lagged Simon off on a rickshaw ride back to Radisson. The two of us stayed a few minutes more to wander the streets, where a cashmere sweater caught my eye which led to me making my last purchase in Kathmandu.
We were picked up by Christy and family for dinner, at 19:30. It was a Mediterranean restaurant, if memory serves me correctly.