October 17, 2008:
Bhaktapur and Patan
Got up at 7:30 and decided to have breakfast at the Pumpernickel Cafe. I went over there around 8 and
ran full smack into Suzi who had the same idea. I hardly recognized her at first all cleaned up! We had
breakfast together. What great croissants they have here! Suzi got my message from last night and had
already arranged with Bharat to get picked up by him around 9 am at her guesthouse. Once we got there,
Bharat arrived and then got the car. We went to Bhaktapur. Suzi wanted to go there with "male
protection". She had been there before but left within a very short time as she continually got molested
by the local male population, something I had a tough time believing as I had been in Bhaktapur already
twice and thought it was very safe. Once we got to Bhaktapur, first thing what happened was that Suzi
got pooped on her leg by a pigeon....
Then, at Durbar Square, we did a couple of "trial runs" where Bharat and I would let her go ahead and
venture out on her own and sure enough, within a minute or two she was being harrassed by guys. Not
much fun being a single female in Bhaktapur! So Bharat and I "saved" her a couple of times and her new
"friends" disappeared instantly. We noticed actually another lady who was by herself getting real angry at
these guys.  
We had a pleasant time in Bhaktapur.
Walked from Durbar Square to the
Peacock Window area to Tachupal
Tole. At one time, we witnessed a pretty
raggedy man eat a dead raw pigeon.
Gross!! He looked however as he was
in desperate need of food. Bharat
showed us a couple of temples and
places in Bhaktapur I hadn't been yet
and we also had a drink on the rooftop  
terrace of a restaurant at Tachupal Tole.
Then we went to Patan. Also here, Bharat took us to a couple of temples and courtyards I had not been
yet. Investigated some the prices of the Buddha art work displayed in the many shops in Patan. Patan is
famous for its bronze casting and many shops offer gold plated and bronze figures of Buddha. Maybe
next time I'll buy a piece.
Durbar Square in Patan was unbelievably crowded and the Golden Temple was overflowing with
tourists, especially Austrians. A year ago, when I was here with my son Marc, we were almost the only
tourists there. We drove back to Kathmandu where we arrived at around 3:30 pm.
At 5 pm, I was supposed to meet up with David at Pilgrims. I went there a little early and had a long,
pleasant discussion with a lady who knew a lot more about mountaineering books than I do (and that's
my hobby!!). I wish I could have talked to her even longer but, as David didn't show up, I was going to
meet Bharat and Suzi at the Ciao Restaurant so that we could go to Bharat's house for dinner and also
enjoy the sunset from the rooftop of his house. Bharat and his little nephew met us and brought us to his
home in the neighbourhood behind the Malla Hotel. Once up on the rooftop, the view was spectacular. Of
course, right before sunset, David called (still without a watch), who missed me at Pilgrims by a few
minutes. While I was going back to pick him up, Bharat and his sister were preparing dinner for us.
We had dinner around 7 pm. Delicious.
Boneless chicken wings and curry potatoes
as appetizers and then Dhal Bhat! Bharat's
house is one of the few places where I like to
eat this. Bharat's older brother joined us as
well. Then Bharat showed us some of the
great pictures he took from an ABC trip
earlier in the year. One of those pictures
actually made it to the 2009 Annapurna
calendar on sale in every map store in
Kathmandu. Around 9 pm we left Bharat's
house. Suzi had an early flight out of
Kathmandu the next morning (so she
thought, it was delayed forever causing her
to miss her connection in Delhi and spending
22 hours at that great airport, never fly Royal
Nepal Airlines!). We said our good-byes and I
went back to my hotel where I watched some
baseball (the World Series was on) and fell
asleep. Of course, that sleep was disturbed of
and on by those barking dogs of Kathmandu!