Wednesday, August 29, 2018

FUN with Nicola and Phoebe

Wednesday, 29 August 2018
Photos by Phoebe, Nicola, and Anita

Pheobe writes:

Arriving in Kathmandu I was so excited for my visit but did not know what to expect. What came next was the most incredible 2 days exploring Nepal with the best little tour guides that you could ask for. 

Having walked to Spiny Babbler, not knowing what we would find, we were greeted with a flavour of true Nepalese hospitality. Pallav was the most gracious host and an incredible teacher to such lovely children. 

I learned so much in my short trip and it was an honour to meet everyone from Spiny Babbler. I look forward to my next trip and to learning more about such an amazing country.

We thank you for your kind words and hope to have you again here at Spiny Babbler. The girls and our other children will love to have you guys again. Thank you.

Anita writes:

Yesterday, there were three friends at our school gate. They were just looking at our signboard. Pallav sir saw them and said hello to them. We came down and we also said hello to them. 

Then, we went to the office and Pallav sir discussed about our school and Vidheha. They were happy to hear Shila and I playing the flute.

I also taught them how to play the flute. Nicky played the flute very well and we also took the photos and videos. Her friend, Phoebe was also great. They were such nice people, we liked them. 

One was from Australia and the others from England. After that, we ate our dinner together. They loved the Nepalese food. They wanted to learn Nepali language as well.

They asked us how to say how are you in Nepali. We taught them "Timi kasto chau?" They were able to learn it very fast. Then, we discussed about world heartiest side. 

Pallav sir told us that we were visiting their hotel the next day. They were staying at a hotel named "Taleju".

This morning I was very excited. Karan sir came and we went to Taleju hotel together to pick them up. They were easy to find and all of us were now together in the van.

First we went to Boudha. I had never been to Boudha before. It was big and amazing. We took some photos there. We got to see many thanka paintings as well. 

Nicky and her friend Phoebe were very happy, as they had never seen a place like this before. 

Next, we went to the Pashupatinath Temple. The Pashupatinath Temple is older than Boudha. There were lots of monkeys to see. 

We also visited the graveyard there. Nicky and Phoebe were so scared so they didn't go near the graves.

Our next visit was to Guyeshwori temple and Mrigasthali to see the deer but we were unable to find even one due to the rain.

After that we visited Bhaktapur. We were very hungry so we had our lunch there. We ate dahi, beaten rice, momo and eggs. 

In Bhaktapur, we visited the Potter's Square, and saw hard working men and women making and coloring many pots. Next stop to the jeri sweet market where we got to eat fresh jerries there. 

We even shopped few things like bracelets, there. Nicky and Phoebe were very happy to go to these different places with us.

Lastly, since our trip was over and Nicky and Phoebe were going back to their home, we went to the airport and said goodbye. And then we returned to our school.

Shila writes:

When Phoebe and Nicky visited us, we had a great trip to different places of Kathmandu. Phoebe and Nikki wants to come back to Nepal again. And they told us they would be coming back soon. 

Anita didi, Vidheha and I miss Phoebe and Nikki very much. We want to meet them again. They told us they will never forget us. We will also never forget them and the trip. We played the flute, keyboard and songs together and had fun on the day we met. 

Next day, we went to many places like the Pashupatinath Temple, Bouddha and Bhaktapur. We all loved these places. Nicky and Phoebe were very happy to meet us and see the new places.

We were pleased hear from Nicky, Phoebe and Wendy again after they went back to Dubai where they work. They sent us their love.

Pallav writes:

I was moving my office downstairs and as I was arranging the books, out of the window I saw three girls looking at the signboard and talking. I thought they were tourists wandering about.

 A minute later, they were still there looking a little lost so I looked out and waved. They asked if this was Spiny Babbler, and I said yes. 

They asked if the gallery was open, and though the shutters were down and it was after 5 pm, I decided well, since they are interested, might as well open the door to them.

I go down and open the gate and guess what, one of them says, "Hi, I am Wendy Birman's granddaughter." And opens her phone to show me an email from you for proof!

I invited the three girls upstairs. After talking with them for a bit, I asked if they would like tea, they did, and once they were comfortable I asked them if they would like to stay for dinner, which they did. 

Our students and my daughter Vidheha played flute for them and Nicola played sections of Mozart's Ode to Joy on the Eastern bamboo flute which Vidheha is learning on the piano!

Since they seemed comfortable, I asked them if they would like to travel around with us the next day. 

I was somewhat surprised that they were in Kathmandu for one night only, but heeeey it was great that they were here, that they had sought us out using Google maps, that I was looking out of the window just then! I had not received your email and it was a series of coincidences. 

In Nepal we have a 6 day work week as you know and my wife called our driver if he knew anyone who could drive us around town, he was at his girlfriend's birthday party and they had plans the next day but he kindly volunteered to take us around instead. I was embarrassed to learn this the next day, but thankful to him.

So after dinner, it was raining and we went to look for taxi and we got a most kind taxi driver to take them to the hotel (kind taxi drivers are like a super rarity around here) and when it is night and raining, most of them turn into blood-sucking nasties, which this one wasn't!

The next day was wonderful, their hotel was easy to find, Nicola and Phoebe went with us to Boudha, Pashupati, and Bhaktapur.

What a wonderful day, a mild drizzle and then some sun and a calm cloud cover helped make the day. 

The entry tickets that they charge Westerners to enter the area was more than steep though but still, these are the main places to see in Nepal and I hope Nicola and Phoebe found it worth the cost.

We had the special Juju (King's) Bhaktapur yogurt, hand beaten Bhaktapur rice flakes for lunch under a peepal tree around shrines. 

I wonder if that was ok, cause mostly visitors are used to restaurants rather than temple stones to sit on for lunch.

Everything was perfect, the day, the timing, and the tiredness also, I think. The girls had an hour to shop as well!

I think all of us were somewhat exhausted by the end of the day. We dropped them off at the airport 15 minutes early. 

Some years ago, my sister-her 3 kids-and my mom missed their international flight because we reached the airport 15 minutes late. I did not want Nicola to have the same problem.

Even today, the girls misses them a lot. They even wrote a blog about the fun day by themselves