Awoke at 3am this morning (Jet lag kicking in) and spent a rather slow first several hours. It is amazing how little there is to do in Kathmandu at 3am.
Some time later, breakfast over and done with, it was time to explore Kathmandu. We headed for Thamel, like all tourists do. It is the tourist Mecca of Kathmandu. The streets were alive with hawkers and shop keepers jossling for the attention of the tourists.
We set off in search of additional trekking gear. I had assured everyone not to buy in Australia as it was so much cheaper over here. Well there was plenty but it wasn't that much cheaper without some serious bargaining.
Our trekking needs fulfilled we headed deeper into Kathmandu proper. The tourist traffic died away an we began to see more typical kathmandu, more natives, less tourists. Less hassling from street sellers and more women and children. It was only then that we noticed that they had been largely missing from the main tourist spots.
By midday were deep in the old city and I was being to think we may have trouble finding our way back but we got a point in the right direction and remarkably quickly we were back in Thamel.
It was 1pm before we were back at the Shanker and we were thinking food. We settled in at a table on the lawn and that took care of the rest of the afternoon. Full stomach, several Carlsberg beers and a conversation that got progressively more colourful as the afternoon progressed.
Our sirdar (that's trek leader to you) was supposed to meet us at 3pm but didn't show up till 5. Noone seemed to mind, the pace of life is walking pace here. We walked back to Thamel for dinner at Kilroy's. It's an icon for tourists in Kathmandu and the food is excellent and cheap. Then a walked back for an early night and a sound sleep.