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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Nepal 1

The Bhutanese people are very superstitious. It was surprising that Ugyen never told us that we were leaving for Nepal on the worst possible day to start a journey. Things did not go well. The road down to Phuentsholing, the border city with India, was open. Only just. Large slips, from the deluges of rain, narrowed the road. We were buffeted off the road by huge Tata trucks careering towards us around blind corners. The fog was so thick that we could not even see the hundred foot drops beside us. No hope of seeing any oncoming traffic. Still, we made it. 
The six hour ride across India was sardine-like. At least the day was overcast, with spots of rain. The tea gardens beside the road provided a pleasant enough view. The talk of a strike across India was forgotten. Until, after 4 hours of bone-shaking riding, we were stopped by a group of ruffians telling us to turn back. The driver decided to continue. If stopped, Daniel was going to give his rendition of a man in the early stages of death, and we were going to claim to be an ambulance. The reason why twenty other people were accompanying Daniel was still to be worked out. We were not stopped though, and made the Nepal border. Next we just had to get our visas and catch the plane to Kathmandu.

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