We had to meet in the hotel lobby at 5.45am to get ready to leave for Lukla. Our traveling clothes and extra luggage were left with the concierge while we tried valiantly to cram all of our trekking and climbing gear into 15 kg of baggage allowance. We tried… and failed. Half of our bags would have to follow on the next flight.
The domestic terminal at Tribhuvan airport is under construction. As we walked up the pathway into the dark building site we had to dodge loose ground and ditches. There was a throng of people waiting to go through security – it was very strange and a little spooky, it seemed like we were trying to escape!
The airport check in area was better as it was a lit building. It reminded me of the old African airports – once upon a time, a very long time ago, there was new technology here…
Once we were checked in, we waited for our flight to be called. When it was we excitedly boarded the bus and were driven to our twin otter Sita Airlines plane.
We sat in the bus for about an hour until we were driven back to the terminal to wait. The weather was not good enough to fly to Lukla. After waiting in the terminal for at least another hour we were told to try again tomorrow. Oh well, that’s the life of a mountaineer…. The weather determines when you can move, regardless of how well planned your itinerary is. We were taken back to town to stay in the Eco Tourism lodge in the heart of Thamel.
Molly, Meina and I had lunch at a local restaurant recommended by our guide, Mouhan. It was called the Momo Hut and specialized in the local delicacy Momo. Small dumplings filled with different fillings – not unlike dim sum. They were delicious and I broke my LCHF regime to try them out. It was well worth it. One set of them were filled with Buff… which turned out to be Buffalo! Interesting..!
The afternoon was spent relaxing at the hotel – taking advantage of wifi and electricity for charging our devices (every traveller here has his face buried in a phone!). I decided to change my iPhone’s wallpaper in the hope of breaking this bad habit.
In the evening we found our way through the Thamel maze of streets to Kilroys Cafe. This is a popular spot in Kathmandu and the food was pretty good. It was another chance for us to get to know each other a bit better before we head off into the Himalaya.