Post written December 25: Well Merry Christmas to all.
Today I awoke after a really nice sleep. A light breakfast of toast and jam was served, and my daily medications were brought to me. I had a “Merry Christmas” chat with my family via Skype, which was really nice and needed. I was feeling much better today and ended up being discharged in the morning. I can honestly say that it was a great 2+ days in the hospital. In fact, it was similar to a hotel. I can’t say enough good things about the doctor, nurses and staff at Swacon International. They were so caring, attentive, and the service was great. I do have to return for a follow-up appointment, but until then, I was off to be my old self.
I decided to check in to the swanky Royal Penguin Boutique Hotel and Spa in the Thamel area, and the accommodations are unlike anything I’ve experienced in Nepal so far. I walked into the room in awe. It’s not that it’s more upscale than what I would find back home… but that’s thing: I’m not back home! Psychedelic blue lights surrounded the bed with an eclectic mix of Nepali and modern design elements to the room. A king-sized bed with a tiger stuffed animal greeted me. This would be my home for 2 nights.
And then I suddenly felt hungry, so I ordered the “American Breakfast”. I decided I would stick to some familiar foods as I regained my appetite. Once room service arrived, I gorged on the food. This is significant because it would be my first large meal since lunch on Day 2 of the trek! Man was it the best scrambled eggs, hash browns and chicken sausages ever.
Ramesh stopped by and then we headed to Nepal Eco Adventure. As bummed as I am about having to leave the trek (and honestly I’m still trying to process this fact), there are still many more days available for adventure, so I wanted to ensure that I planned something. After discussions with Chhatra and Ramesh, I decided I would fly to the touristy city of Pokhara about 200 km west of Kathmandu. I’ll visit the lake, the International Mountain Museum, and do some hiking. We’ve also planned visits to Dhampus and Australian Camp for amazing sunset and sunrise views of the Annapurna mountain range. I’m looking forward to it!
Then it was back to the hotel where I booked an amazing 90 minute “Trekker’s Massage”, which is a fusion of a soft tissue massage and limb-bending-everything-stretching Thai massage. I’ve never had my limbs pulled in different directions like that… but by the end, I was quite relaxed. I slowly made my way back to the room where I ordered a chicken burger and fries to round out the night.
It wasn’t exactly the Christmas I had planned. But it was a nice one nonetheless.
I’m not going to lie though. At times, today felt weird and lonely. It didn’t help that I would log on to Facebook and see the festivities of people back home, or photos from the trekking group (nicknamed ‘Ricky and the Sparkling Momos’) at Leboche. At times, my heart hurt. It’s not like I was a Debbie Downer all day, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have my moments. I kept reminding myself to be grateful for the amazing experiences I had so far in Nepal. After all, I did get to see Mount Everest, which isn’t too shabby a Christmas gift, if you ask me…