It’s November in Nepal. Everyday I wake huddled under my covers, trying to stave off a room temperature that has dropped to 45 degrees. It takes a lot of effort to remove my blankets and get started on my day. I put on 3 or 4 layers to prepare for my scooter ride into town, bracing for the cold air that is about to whip across my body. Many Northerners might chatise me for saying that 45 degrees is cold; however, in Nepal no houses are heated, so you feel every single degree change. The air is still foggy, and remnants of a polluted smog are visible hovering over the city.
By mid day, beautiful rays of sun greet me as the temperature has risen to the low 70s. Gone are the monsoon clouds and humidity from the summer, and the Himalayas are visible from my bedroom everyday. This is one of the best times of the year to be in Nepal, as long as you are comfortable with dressing and removing many layers of clothing. Thamel is bustling with tourists – guestrooms are full and resturants are packed with patrons. There is energy and excitement in the air.
And yet in this setting, here thousands of miles away from home, there is still the same old me. I certainly have grown and evolved in ways I am not even aware of yet. However, the many of same fears and weaknesses remain with me. I lost myself for a few months, but the core still exists somewhere deep down and it’s rising up again to greet me. The good and the bad are still there, making their appearances known. You can leave a place, but you can’t leave yourself behind completey. Eventually, it’s still the same old ugly you have to face over and over again. I think the best part of this experience is facing these challenges so far away from what is familiar to me, and rising everytime to meet them.
Just like the fog has dissipated to unveil the magestic Himilayas, my own mind is clearing to reveal different parts of me.