MUSTANG: I had a great time. I LOVE an adventure. It was SO great to meet you and spend QUALITY time with you. I love your vibrancy and ease. You rock Ms.Dunham. You allowed me to be my goofiest, most fun self. I can be staid and boring too, you know, if I want. There was so much to learn and see. I have my pictures up and I took just enough and not to many. Everything felt just right. I feel like baby bear. Last day was a bit of check on mortality, but I am used to that too.
Everything is unpacked, cleaned and I am back to mother bear. My poor kids got so far behind on their homework and projects (urgggh!!!) that I have just been working with them to catch back up. Nice way for them to spend Memorial Day weekend, doing homework. So, the trip was just last week and it feels like forever ago.
Also, once we got back Cindy went with Sage to a cool Hindu city. It
might be cool to add that on as an option so that people can contrast
Buddhism and Hinduism. That isn't necessary, but an idea. The trip
rocked. I realize that I live by the tenets of Buddhism but don't practice a Buddhist religion. I probably live by them more than the Buddhists themselves who have survival as a primary concern (I.e., ripping off tourists, hitting their cows, cheating on their wives, etc.), so in the airport I did get "Buddhism for Dummies" and it is a great book!!! I did fold the cover back on the plane when I was reading it because I didn't want anyone to think I was dumb. He!!He!!!
We did have a reading list for the trip (and I read a lot), but a map of
our proposed destination or description of stops with some information would be cool. I am a bit of a techie, information geek so I don't know if others would value that. But, I felt like I was getting the information but missing so much too.Here is what I valued most that I packed. Packing:
- toilet paper
- bars, snacks
- a good high capacity Camelback with backpack (worth the investment!!!!!!!!) No other travel pack comes close.
- large thick grade boating back for my pack animal. It was tough enough
that it wouldn't break if it feel off the horse, but soft for his contours.
- extra (empty when I arrived) carry on wheelie back to leave in Kathmandu
to accommodate delicate and overflow souveniers I brought home (including
my troublesome lions that the security thought was national treasures, butnot).
- a 3 degree sleeping back with liner (everyone else was cold)
- hiking boots not necessary, but comfortable durable shoes that fit into stirrups
- tight pants with half chaps; or polo wraps for the legs
- other people said that they were getting rope rash or their pants were
slipping up. I recommend the half chaps or wrapping the legs with polos
- hat with a string to tie it on for the wind
- lots of sunblock
- medicated lubricant for lips and chapped hands
- explain the culture - no tanktops; capped sleeves OK, but long
breatheable fabric recommended beause the sun is so strong
- a dusk mask or scaves to cover the mouth and nose due to wind and dust
- warm hat for night or wind that covers the ears (because of wind)
You covered lots of these things but these are what made my trip comfortable. I think I really packed very well and was happy about that.
Maybe a little more of an explanation of why for each item and people will pack better. I followed your list and packed like a pro, so maybe your list is OK as it is.
Have a great summer.
Posted by: Maureen Block
1. I loved it all.
2. I loved the feeling I was walking the paths of history where few had been since.
3. The guides and horses were brilliant. I never once saw a sigh, scowl or cross look amongst the, If they are used again, they will be very useful as the string spreads out tobeable to talk about the environment
Funniest moment - crawling up some steep ascent behind Karma with his radio which was playing some racket "all day All Night" and he was mumbling Om mani padme hum
Best moment: waking to the Himalayan vista and having a cup of scalding hot masala tea, blessing the forces that enabled me to be there.
Worst moment, personally - the pain after my Jessification. For the trip itself - no worst moment. Nothng about it made me cross or irriated. I did feel slightly overwhelmed with the exertion required at times. Which bizarrely made me glad David wasnt there as no doubt he would have started clucking. And as we realised - if we just follow the ponies lead and put one foot in fron tof the other we will get there. (It might be a good point to say this to future groups - dont kick the horses to go fast up the hill - they are so honest, just needed to catch their breath and every time they caught it and then continued. Bless them.
Knowing it was a recce changes some of the other feelings I had. I worred about Tony. I can see why he came, but I do think he was jolly lucky not to have had a serious mishap. Not sure how you weed people out - has Tom sorted your hefty guest
Posted by: Aurele Jonquil O’Malley
Our trip to Mangolia was the start of what I've been calling my "best summer since I was 22"! Thank you SO much for each part of it's magic. Will I return? I don't suppose it's likely ... but many parts will stay with me. They are etched into my heart: the kindness of the people, the expanses without fences or electricity, the wildness of the landscape, the energy force of Mandel Mountain, the brightness of the starry skies, the bulk of a yak at night.
Posted by: Judy Pigott
Great experience, unique in the world
Posted by: Dena & Jim