I breathe in , deeply, I exhale slowly expelling the warm damp, that is the air pre the daily Monsoon downpour.
I am standing on a rooftop in Paknajol, an area near Thamel the tourist hub of Kathmandu. Grey clouds are gathering and beginning to roll across the Kathmandu valley “hills” into the city. Large wet drops fall in slow motion cascades on myself and my rooftop companion with whom I have been discussing Middle Eastern politics to the tunes of Neil Young. (Doesn’t that just make sense.)
The cascades become a downpour and I stand arms stretched feeling the release from the humidity. Water runs in rivets down my skin- time to dash down the rickety metal spiral stairs to shelter and a nap to take the edge off the jet lag.
Jet lag does affect so much of the body, my jaw talks,water retention, digestion and sensation becomes very present for a few days after a flight but with massage, walking, local curd and yoga it passes.
Speaking of massage and yoga, near my guest house is an amazing natural medical center ( the name escapes me) that also runs yoga intensives.
This morning I had my first one on one yoga session to help my back and get my body back in sync with it’s new environment and oh boy do I know I have done a class right now. My class consisted of mainly twists, laying down yoga ( believe me that sounds deceptively easy but is not) and back bends. My teacher says I am not to do any forward bends for a week or so and I have back bend homework to do each morning and evening before our next session. I am looking forward to getting into the regular class in the next week or so even though it has a reputation for muscle soreness.
I am continually humbled being back in Kathmandu, friends from my last stay greet me as family and pour Chai in my direction. They are opening their homes, contacts,businesses, NGO’s and restaurants open to me and Melbourne photographer Abigail Varney with whom I am working with here. I get the feeling that this trip is going to be very productive professionally and I am loving it.
You can check out Abbi’s work at http://abigailloves.blogspot.com/
Abbi is a crackshot photographer and has been published in a number of magazines in Australia including Frankie and Yen.