To Retreat or Not?

The bus trip from the village to Kathmandu became an epic journey taking 11 hours. Coming in Kathmandu the last 40km was almost stand still for 3 hours. I arrived after 8 o’clock at night, hot thirsty and very tired. I found a taxi driver who was good enough to ring Nabin at the Yoga retreat I was going to, to find out where to go. I ended up meeting him in the city. I had booked into a Yoga, meditation and Chakra Healing retreat in the quiet serene forest. He said ” we would stay in the city tonight and he had a different program on offer”. Arrived at the institute of natural medicine in Kathmandu. Got given a hotel room next door and had a shower. Went out for a meal with Nabin and his wife Sangnita. He had put together a different program which included some sightseeing around the city for 3 days before going to the Forest retreat. He said another lady had chosen that so I went with it too.

Next morning started with a yoga session about 8 am and then breakfast followed by sight seeing with Nabin. Late afternoon we had Sound healing with singing bowls. The teacher Manhal was awesome. After dinner a massage.All very nice and wonderful to have hot showers after 3 weeks of none. Everything felt like heaven after the basic living of the village. One day had what was called ” Third eye and crown chakra healing”. Not quite what I expected. Massage of forehead and head with warm oil but very hard and painful. Felt bruised for days.Visited Bodha Stupa.Main Hindu temple by the river where they put the dead for family to say goodbye, then they build a fire and burn the body. Once burnt and still hot they push it into the river, and it floats away. Very strange tradition.

On day 4 we headed out to the Forest retreat. What a huge disappointment. The place was being renovated and clearly wasn’t ready for guests yet. My room the toilet seat fell off and was very dirty. I asked to be moved. One of the teachers there came and invited me to the hall for questions and talking session, I immediately did not trust this man energy. For the first time on my travels I felt homesick, funny feeling when you don’t have one those and all belongings are in storage. The place was noisy, busy road nearby, hammer s and saws going from builder s renovating. Then they started painting with the most toxic paint.I had paid a lot money to be here and I wasn’t staying in this environment.

Manhal arrived and asked how it was, I was in tears and said I wanted to go back to city retreat. The other young people who had been there a couple days were pissed off and said they were leaving the next day and asking for money back as they had not had program that was offered. Manhal did an amazing group healing that night with singing bowls and crystals. He was aware of how everyone was feeling and asked if we could put it aside for few hours while he did the class. It was an awesome class and everyone loved it. The dinner was disgusting, when I got into bed it was damp so I slept in my sleeping bag.

The next morning Nabin arrived and we had a group discussion, everyone said they wanted their money back. It was offered that we could go back to city retreat, I was only one to choose that but I had booked for 10 day retreat and really I couldn’t be bothered trying to find somewhere else to go. Also I was enjoying the Yoga and healing everyday. The next day I had diarrhea from the food at the Forest..feeling like crap, I lay low for a few days and took some medication.

I learnt a lot about the culture of Nepalese while staying here for 10 days. They have these strict custom s about religion, marriage etc. But from the stories I heard about their families, where father had gone off with mothers sister, had another child and returned 20 year later to first wife. Who had brought children up on own. They just like any human beings but hiding behind lies and traditions. Different religions ,have different classes as well and so some think they are better than others. Women are treated like slaves and expected not to have career even when educated but to look after the children and the husband family. It’s a hard place to get a visa to travel or get out of Nepal. 

The city of Kathmandu is very dirty and crowded. Roads are sub standard. Cheap to stay there, buy clothes etc and to eat. I loved the experience but ready to go. Yoga now being a regular routine. Ohm three times, my dear friend Manhal says as an opening prayer and he gave me an ohm symbol to remind me.

I feel very blessed for my time in Nepal, and my awareness of the world had expanded, New horizons awaits me now.

Blessings to you all.

Flow xx

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