Nepal to New York – The Return
So I am currently sitting in the Abu Dhabi airport waiting for our flight from Kathmandu to New York to start its second and final leg. It has been just over a month since I left New York for Nepal, and needless to say it has been an amazing experience. This was my first time in Nepal, but it will definitely not be my last. Even though I was only there for a month, and was in two very different places (the far northwestern Humla and the capital Kathmandu), the taste of Nepal that I had so far was amazing.
I’ve already posted a number of pictures since returning from our initial trip in the more remote region of Humla, but I still haven’t really had time to digest everything that I saw, heard, tasted and experienced–at least not fully. A lot of the next month will be spent going through photos and video, reviewing our trip records, working with GPS data and geo-tagged photos, and basically going through all the “raw data” from the trip. I don’t have a final tally yet, but I probably shot close to 150 video clips and about 15,000 photos, enough to fill about 150 Gb of space on half a dozen flash drives.
I hope to put together at least one photo slideshow in the coming month, as well as at least one short mini-doc of video from the trip. Whether I can get all of this done before the end of the year is unclear, but at least I will get a good start.
It’s a very different experience traveling abroad when you’re part of a group, especially a research team, and this is the third time I have had the luck to travel like this–the first two being in southern China and northern India last summer. It really is a different experience being with locals and not just seeing someplace as a total outsider. Of course, being part of a research group also has its limitations–the biggest one being the constant on work schedule and tight planning of every day–leaving little time to explore and wander, which is my preferred way of exploring. I guess you could say I have a bit of a flâneur in me in that respect.
Even as much as I have enjoyed this trip I am still looking forward to being back home again. In some ways I think traveling helps you appreciate the things you are accustomed to at home, things which you might otherwise start to take for granted. Little things like having good fresh just moments away; leisure time reading in the bathroom; not having to pack your bag over and over every time you move locations, and things of that sort.
Of course, the down side of returning home is that it signals the end of another journey, and in this case, also a return to the hum drum of daily life and work. In this case, the desk job researcher is far less exciting than the remote mountain trekker, although they are connected. So for now it is time to say goodbye to the daily mountain view, and once more make my way in the concrete jungle and glass spires that is New York City.
Until next time…wherever you go, there you are.