It was a fairly short flight from Abu Dhabi to Kathmandu. We had been warned that it was monsoon season, and when we arrived, the rain had been falling. Ironically, our team members from Whitesburg Baptist Church in Huntsville had asked their people to pray that God would shut the heavens while we were there. So I must admit that we actually saw very little rain during our stay. It rained at night, but the daytime was mostly dry – just a few sprinkles.
As we made our way from the plane, we had to track down our luggage, and guess what? Every piece of luggage made it. No problems whatsoever. Sonya had read that we should not allow the baggage handlers to get to our luggage. We did our best to say no, but they prevailed. They piled our luggage on two carriers, and we proceeded to security. It was quite frustrating because they had piled everything together, and the security agent had to find what piece of luggage went with which tag. Finally, out of frustration, he waved us through. As we made our way through the people at the airport and into the parking lot, we were met with several more baggage handlers who wanted to help. We were able to decline their assistance until we arrived at the truck with our hosts who had met us at the door. Suddenly, three others proceeded to help load the bags even though we had told them we didn’t need the help. And would you believe they insisted that we give them a tip, too. We held firm, and they were not happy, but we finally got the message across to them.
Unfortunately, our hosts had only brought one truck, so the ladies piled into the truck and the men hired a taxi. What a ride. In the dark. Through the traffic. Horns blaring. Cars everywhere. It took about 30 minutes, but we made it to the Guest House where we paid 1000 rupees for the taxi – about $10. After we unloaded all of our bags, rooms were assigned. Only Sonya and I didn’t have a room at the Guest House. Due to another landslide, some of the teams had to return to the city and were given rooms. So they booked us at the Ghorka Bed and Breakfast.
What a treat! So we grabbed our backpacks and duffle bag and began our walk through the drizzle at night to the Bed and Breakfast. Our host said that he had heard the place was nice and looked forward to hearing about our experience. Unfortunately, he had never been there so we walked and we walked and we walked carrying all of our bags. We backtracked because we thought we had missed it only to find that we had turned back about 10 steps too soon. But we found it. And it was a typical Nepali house where they rented out a room. We did have a private bathroom and a shower – but the shower didn’t really work. So we washed up with baby wipes and hit the bed. Sleep was good, and when we awakened at 5 a.m., we dressed, grabbed our bags, and started our walk back to the Guest House – which we had only been to at night for just a few minutes. And you guessed it. We missed our turn. Walked for a mile or so with our backpacks and duffle bags, asking if anyone knew where the Guest House might be. But do you know that very few people understood our English, and we knew no Nepali. Fortunately, we remembered that the road went over a ditch that was an open sewer, so we made it to the Guest House only to find that everyone was asleep, the gate was locked, and we couldn’t get in. Day 3 was not starting very well at all, and it was not going to get much better.