So what’s everyone doing? Whatcha dressing up as? I do love me some Halloween, I’m kinda sad to be missing it. Someone please save some candy for me… preferably some peanut M&Ms, thanks! Oh, and shoot me some pictures of all your ghoulish fun.
Since my last blog covered so much ground, this one will be much shorter I promise. Saturday night was dinner at ‘The General’s house. It was the same crew that was at Shivapuri on Prem’s birthday, minus Ed sadly. Let me paint you just a brief picture with just names alone; The General, his wife Sunita, Prem, Shiva (a man), Sashi ( also a man), 'Miss Margarita' (can't remember her real name), 'The Iron Lady' (her name escapes me as well, but I believe she is Shiva's wife), Milo, Raj and myself. I felt like I was in a game of Clue. The food was amazing, the company even better, and laughter was in abundance. The General gave us a very generous tour of the house, aka the roof to smoke. I’m sorry let me restate and rephrase that for the full impact. I was a guest in the house of one of the oldest families in Nepal. No, let me try again, I had a dinner of mutton and dhal bhat, a bottle of wine, and a lot of weed with a three time decorated General of the Nepalese army. AND this guy has pictures of my arm tattoos on his cell phone. BOOM! How surreal is that?! My mind is blown at my time here in Nepal from everything I’ve learned and experienced to the amazing people I’ve met and would now consider my friends. In fact, I was supposed to go to my hotel today and Prem kindly offered that I stay till Tuesday. Who does that?! Like I said, mind blown …and heart overflowing.
Now let’s move on to my previous “To stay or not to stay” quandary. And the answer, tis ’ ‘to stay’. It seemed more of a hassle to change my ticket this last minute and struggle to find a way to fill 2 weeks in South Africa without spending too much dough. So I will be headed to DharmaShringa Vipassana Meditation Centre on Tues November 1st. It turns out it’s back towards Shivapuri, right at the base of the park entrance. From that evening till the morning of the 12th, I will be in silent meditation. That means I will be completely incommunicado till the early afternoon of the 12th (the evening of the 11th for most of you). In addition to the no talking rule, there is also no writing, reading or listening to music. Oh, and no eating after 5pm. The day begins at 4am and goes till 9-9:30pm. Uh, I like extremes…I guess. I also took it as a sign that as Eddie was packing, he mentioned his sleeping bag that he wanted to chuck once back home or see if Prem’s family could use it. I couldn’t believe it, gawd bless kismet! If you all remember, in my acceptance email I was told I needed to bring my own bedding and or a sleeping bag, or both. According to him, it’s the worst sleeping bag in existence as far as comfort and he seemed almost hesitant for me to take it. I could have it on one condition; that I do not curse him when the thing drives me crazy too. I soooo did not care, because it’s compact, perfect temperature wise, and it’s FREE! All I need it to do is keep me from freezing for 11 nights. Thank you Ed!!! And thank you Raj for the sheet sack thing!
Now that the decision is made, it feels right and I’m getting kind of excited for this challenge and experiment. Whether I actually manage to fall into some transcendental, meditative state where I master astral travel or I just sit a bit uncomfortably and let my mind prattle on for 10-12 hours a day it will be an unforgettable experience. The biggest challenge for me will be the ‘no writing’ rule, because there will be much to download and process I’m sure. I’m hoping though that my mind will eventually exhaust itself and shut the hell up. Prajunna was insistent on getting the number so he could call and speak to someone, in order to make sure this thing was really legit and that I wasn’t just being trucked off and sold into slavery gawd knows where. Raj, Milo and I were hanging out with Prem, Shiva, and The General last night when Prajunna came in to tell me it was a go. The General quickly piped in that he knew several people who had gone there, including his sister, and that it was quite rigorous and intense. He said though that if you can really get into it and get past the discomforts, then you feel amazing for like 2 days. He was being very serious, but it struck me as quite funny. I laughed and said, “So basically its ten days of really hard work to feel good for 2 and then it’s back to the same old shit.” They all laughed but that seemed the truth of it. It will certainly make for an interesting chapter in the book if nothing else.
Raj and Milo leave today, and I will be sad to see them go.... I am determined though to get myself to London sometime 'soon'! Today then for me will be spent getting all necessary communication and internet work out of the way.... as in, I want to go ahead and change my ticket home so I can make a pit stop in Savannah for a good ol' Southern Christmas. I've never had one, and the South is definitely a culture onto itself so in no way will my adventure be over just because I'm stateside. I also may take myself out for a stroll and a bit of window shopping. I wish I could be buying everyone all the fabulous 'souvenirs' I've seen, but alas my presence back home will have to be gift enough. HA! I'm already seriously adding to my load with the sleeping bag alone.
Please check Facebook or the link from my last post for some final pictures.....
Wish me luck tomorrow!!
I bid you all Adieu till the 12th or 13th.