For the last six months or so, I’ve been working on a personal project: An Adventure. For most of the month of June, I was half way around the world, visiting Emily and traveling across Bangladesh and Nepal. The experience was pretty amazing and definitely falls under the category of “Life Experience.” Even now, after months of planning and saving and making lists and visiting doctors, after getting on multiple planes, seeing strange and wonderful things, and getting back on those planes going the opposite direction, the whole experience is surreal. Did a really do that? Really? Yeah. I did.
Emily and I went to grad school together. We’re good friends. We like irreverent selfies.
The reason I even got the opportunity to go halfway around the world is because Emily is a librarian and teacher at a boarding school outside of Dhaka, Bangladesh. The school is very new, and when she arrived last August, there wasn’t a library to speak of. This is what it looks like now:
In some ways the school wasn’t so different from your average American school. Iron Man, Bart Simpson, and Wolverine still show up. This mural was painted by the students. The boys’ uniforms were still in states of disarray, even on graduation day. One obvious difference: The cultural portion of the graduation program included various Bollywood-inspired dances.
We traveled a bit in the northeast part of the country. This was outside Srimongal. The next day we crossed briefly (and illegally) into India while on a boat tour of the Lalakhal River, which turns into the Ganges in India.
Kathamandu, Nepal. We didn’t stay long, but it was so wonderfully cool there after the heat of Bangladesh.
Mangoes growing in a tree outside our hotel in Chitwan, Nepal. So close and yet so far! I attempted to eat my weight in mangoes while I was abroad. This is a completely legitimate reason to travel to that part of the world. Also, I rode an elephant in Chitwan. Life Experience Points +1.
Kid riding a camel backwards down the streets of Pokhara, Nepal. You know. Like you do.
This is also Pokhara. It rained almost the whole time we were there, and this is what it looked like just before the rain started pouring down. This picture looks like I shot it with an artsy-fartsy black and white filter, but actually I took it in color. It just looked like that naturally.
And finally, a view from the top of the world. Not literally. I didn’t climb Everest or anything. This was Nagarkot, Nepal, where we went to see a sunrise over the Himalayas. There wasn’t much of a sunrise, unfortunately, due to low clouds, but the chance to just spend a night in a converted Hindu temple on top of the world (where this was the view from our room) was more than worth it.