6:30 pm

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Early start today, woke at 3:30am amped for my first taste of Nepal. Uber driver took me at F1 speed to the airport, 5 hours fly time and then the Kathmandu valley opened up to me. It was a hair raising landing but I had been warned. Humid, gritty , dusty were my first impressions of this this town. Funky smells. A crazy ride through hell traffic to get to my hotel ( how will I ever negotiate these roads on the Royal Enfield???). Quick turnaround, grabbed a taxi and was straight off to Pashupatinath temple to view the cremations. Smoke, corpses and ash. Naked children swimming amongst the debris. Tried to be respectful and not wave the camera around too much. Polite hassling, sore red eyes from the smoke but the smell quite sweet, lots of incense mixed with the cremation pyres. Bought the girls jewelry. The taxi became my afternoon driver of course and next stop was the Bouda Stoupa, a major Kathmandu Buddhist shrine and clockwise walking square. Scouted the perimeter and will come back here for singing bowls, magnets, Buddhas and teeshirts for the girls on my last day. Tried to get some decent pics but not easy. Did go to the inner of the temple and had a monk pray for me and give me a mantra , small donation of course. Polite beggars asking for food not money. The hustling here has been bearable. Meeting the biking crew tonight, bike touring starts tomorrow first thing.

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