New Year in Varanasi has been a sobering affair. Christmas was a succession of warm days followed by cool nights that allowed for deep untroubled sleep, but new year was met by a cold weather front that left Varanasi draped in cold, damp air that left many people wandering about draped in blankets. Any locals unlucky enough to be sleeping rough were in danger of their lives as they are often not healthy enough to cope with such a cold snap, spirits seemed dampened too as rooms are unheated and places where people often frequent are outside. Continue reading New Year
It can take time to find a good place to stay in a town, but we landed on our feet here at the Ganga View Hotel for Christmas and anywhere is going to be downhill after that. Continue reading Ganpati
I read today that Varanasi is the world’s oldest inhabited city with an unbroken lineage back to 800BC, and there is evidence of early Aryan settlements as far back as 4000 years ago. I can certainly believe it, the small alleys and dirt roads that snake around the back of the ghats look timeless, every nook and cranny seems to have grown as slowly as a snails shell, encrusted with time. Continue reading Varanasi
I woke to a sunrise that calmed the clamorous valley of the previous night. I walked up the arcing stairs of the YHA to the roof and was met with a far warmer world. The laborers on the neighboring building site were huddled around warming morning fires, Pune had become solid after the little pinpricks of light had joined together. Continue reading Mahindra College, Pune to Varanasi.
Arriving in Bombay was like going straight from Pink Floyd, Wish You Were Here on a walkman to having Johnny Rotten singing in your face. I’d think it a privilege if Johnny would do that, but I’d have to be in the right mood and when I arrived in Bombay I wasn’t, so I muttered my way to an overpriced hotel and battened down the hatches until I felt cheerful enough to make the journey to see my daughter at her college near Pune. Continue reading Bombay to Pune YHA
God knows how I made it out of bed on the morning of my flight to Kathmandu, but the same goes for the morning of my flight to India; my autopilot seems to work fine and I arrive at the airport in good time, if not really in any kind of fit state for flying. Continue reading Pokhara to Kathmandu to Bombay
So after our wee Maoist intrusion we carried on with the last days of our course. These melted into nights our with new friends in local eateries, good local Â food, then we went to a Thai restaurant next to Maia Devi, next I discovered the Japanese restaurant in Pokhara and didn’t leave there for the last 5 nights of my stay. Continue reading Pilot
Yesterday was a day off and a good job too, we were hungover from the night before and needed to sleep late. So I popped on over the Maia Devi, the home of Adam and Jennifer from Frontiers Paragliding Nepal to use the internet connection and relax in front of the landing zone. Continue reading Maoists in Pokhara
We went up to the high site at Sarankot today which is just under a kilometre up in the air. We made two flights and landed in a field by the river where the local kids came and helped us to pack up our wings. Continue reading Paragliding Course day Five, High.
More of the same as yesterday as we needed to get the hang of launches etc – tomorrow we get to try high launches for the first time, so looking forward to that. Continue reading Paragliding Course Day Four