Wednesday, 27 June 2012

My first impression of Nepal

Nepal is not how I imagined at all. I imagined snow capped mountains, cold weather and chilly nights around a log fire. In India I picked up lots of winter clothes along the way for Nepal. I should have researched more. It is monsoon season, 35 degrees, humid, sweaty, and hot and has not stopped raining since I arrived. Kathmandu city is like a clean Khosan Road in Bangkok with heaps of bars, restaurants and lots of shops selling everything you can imagine.
After a few days in the city eating momo’s, shopping and making friends with the local street hawkers I headed to Pokhara city. A clean, comfortable  6 hour drive from Kathmandu by tourist bus made a nice change to the Indian bus journeys of 16 hrs or more. Pokhara is a lush green tropical looking city. The city is built around a huge lake with all the guest houses, bars and restaurants dotted alongside the lake. It feels weird seeing so many bars, beer advertisements and people drinking everywhere after being in India. People drink in public here and do not cover up. That is the biggest shock to my system, seeing girls in short dresses, singlets and shorts. I am still covering up and went as far as to wear a singlet but still could not wear shorts. It just feels weird showing so much flesh. It feels like Thailand without sun. Imagine a dull Thailand without a beach. This is it!
I and Ella decided to spend a day checking out the local temples and visiting the biggest pagoda in Pokhara. It started and to rain so we decided to get the bus. After an hour of waiting for the bus I stuck my thumb out to hitch hike and we scored a lift in a flash 4x4 with four Nepali local men. We hopped in the back of the trailer as there was no room inside and prayed the rain would stop. After a bumpy hour up a huge winding steep mountain we arrived at the stupa. Chatting to the men we figured out one was a kernel with the guerkas, one a chairman of a Nepali charity, one a business man and the youngest one of 32 a taxi driver. After looking around the stupa and taking photos they invited us to join them for lunch at their secret local bar. They drove us into the countryside where there was a few bamboo huts in the hills surrounded by rolling green fields and hills. Drinks arrived, bottles of whisky, local millet wine, Australian red wine, beer, buffalo meat, chicken bits, cucumber and chili dip.
I have not had red wine for months. It was amazing. After spending the afternoon with them drinking, eating and chatting they invited us to party. They told us every Saturday was boy’s day when they all meet together and leave their wives and kids at home and it would be a pleasure if we joined them. The youngest kept saying it was a dream comes true we met and he will remember this day forever. We headed into the city and pulled up at a bar called ‘The dancing restaurant’. It was dark, full of restaurant tables and chairs, sofas and had a cat walk with a pole in the centre of the room. Neon lights flashed whilst akon pumped in the back ground. We were swooped on by young Nepali women dressed in tight jeans and low cut tops for our drink order on arrival. Me and Ella told the boys drinks were on us as they footed the bill in the afternoon and we settled into the sofas in our hiking gear wondering whether this was a pick up joint or a restaurant. Drinks and popcorn were served and the music changed. Indian bollywood music pumped out the speakers, the lights went on and a Nepal boy and girl strutted down the catwalk to to the beat. She was dressed in a full Indian sari whilst he wore skinny jeans, skinny t-shirt and a trilby. They danced with each other like it was a high school prom and the men at our table gave the waitresses tips for the female dancer. Next up was a group of young Nepali women bollywood dancing seductively then the finale was a young girl fully clothed swinging around the pole. Sick of wondering I asked ‘Kernel’ was we in a pick up joint and could they buy the dancers. He said no but a few of the men in the group had ‘girlfriends’ here.
Prince the youngest of the group was really drunk and was getting angry with the waitresses. One of the girls would not pay him attention so he threw the silver tray out her hand and started dragging her towards him. None of the men batted an eye lid, she was smiling and people looked on like it was nothing. Me and Ella jumped up and told him to calm down and apologized on behalf of him to the girl. We decided to finish our drinks and leave. Prince would not let us pay the bill and was causing a massive scene so we agreed he could pay. He then took his brother’s wallet and footed the bill with the help of random notes from the other men. We noticed the drinks were 4 times the price of local bars and winked at each other thanking our lucky stars he was acting like a fool footing the bill.
We said our farewells to the other men and thanked them for a good night. We promised to call them whenever we were in town on Saturday and spend a boy’s day with them again. I think I would as long as Prince behaved!
Today Ella was feeling a bit unwell so I decided to take a wander about whilst the rain was off. 5 min of walking and a 30 0dd year old guy stops his motorbike and introduces him. Within 10 min I am on the back of a motorbike with a Nepali vet on call who promises to show me the best sights of the area. We visit temples, caves, local villages and a monastery but he stars to get a bit touchy feely and tells me if I touch him he feels warm?! I decide to make an excuse to leave him and when I refuse to visit his home he spits his dummy out like a child and speeds on the bike. I tell him I must get back to my friend and jump on the next bus me see.Phew! He would never have tried anything I think like Indian men some Nepali men are very immature and act like school kids who have a crush. As soon as they meet you they are thinking of marriage, babies and dates. From now on I will say I am married!

Friday, 22 June 2012

Cashmere and Ladakh..where dreams come true-well almost!

Cathy and Dave arrive after a 36 hour local bus journey and we head out to explore Srinagar. Srinagar is a busy little city with the main attraction being the Dal Lake. The lake is full of house boats and small wooden boats called shikaras that take you on hour tours around the lake. The boat touts roam the streets in their hundreds harassing tourists.
I met a lovely local man who took me for lunch at his home. His wife picked fresh salad from the garden and we ate it for lunch. Later on that evening his friends took me and Irish the river for a beer and we watched the sunset. The people  here are so nice.
I have been in McLeod Ganj so song with so many westerners I forgot what ‘real’ India was like. The stares are back, but this time it feels like there are a million eyes on me at all times. It feels different, I can’t explain why.
 The Cashmere men are so handsome. Dave and Hussam the Israeli guy walk ahead viewing the sights, architecture and culture whilst I and Cathy dawdle behind them eyeing up the local cashmere talent! My god I have never seen so many good looking men in one place. The men here are not like the other Indian men that gawp at you like you have two heads they are all very charming, intelligent and speak very good English. The city relies on its tourism industry so these guys know how to sell ice to Eskimos. Dave and Hussam find mine and Cath’s obsession hilarious and don’t mind when we stop every 5 min to let the hot cashmere men chat us up.Hahah Funny shit.
After a day ogling the local talent we take a boat trip on the lake. It was so relaxing, beautiful and an amazing experience. Various locals float past selling their wares and there was even a man making, cooking and selling shish kebabs from his wooden canoe. I decided I must break my no meat ban. It smelt amazing, looked delicious and tasted fantastic! Hussam has an obsession for all things meat so we spent an hour floating alongside the kebab canoe whilst he gorged on 20p shish kebabs!
That night we followed the local’s recommendations and headed to Srinagar’s most famous Cashmere restaurant, ‘The Mogul Dabba’. The decor, food and service were shit. When we left there was a man outside telling us the real mogul dabba was upstairs. This happens in India. Places get good reputation so cunning business men set up a business in the same literally upstairs in this case to steal business. We investigated upstairs it looked more traditional, the waiters were all smiling and the owner told us he was the real mogul and had been open 20 years. When leaving the boss from where we had ate came to us and demanded he was the real mogul.Catherine exclaimed Eminem style “Can the real Mogul dabba please stand up!” We came to the conclusion we ate in the wrong Dabba and decided to visit the next night.
We went to the real mogul Dabba and it was fantastic apart from Catherine being served meat with her sag dish even after we explained a hundred times no meat! I think she secretly liked the taste of mutton.
We all decide to head to Ladakh but Cathy and Dave want to go by local bus as it’s cheaper. It’s also 24 hours longer so I took a private jeep again with Hussam. We waited and hour to fill the jeep with 6 people. The last person to fill the jeep was a 20 odd year old Indian. He wanted to use the loo before we were setting off and a huge, loud Czech woman who was also in our jeep told him he could not go the loo and to get in the car. The poor lad climbed in the car! I ordered him to go the loo and ignore her. I then told her she cannot tell people if they can or cannot go the loo and I use the loo often so she better not try and tell me what to do! I was so angry. How dare she?!?!? She stared ranting in her own language to her husband whilst looking at me. I just kept staring. I was hoping she was not that crazy as one punch and I’ve been dead. She was built like a WWF wrestler. After 10 min it was obvious the Indian was having a poo and her husband beeped the horn whilst she rudely banged on the cubicle door. I got out the jeep and told her to calm down and asked the driver why he was letting this happen. The Indian guys rushed out the loo still buttoning up his trousers bless him and jumped in the car next to me. It took minutes for me to realize he had human shit to on his trouser leg and shoes and I could smell it. Great. He must have slipped whilst squatting when she was rushing him. I made sure I stopped the jeep every 20 min to have a pee and take a breather.
The drive to Ladakh was one of the most amazing, out of this world experiences I have ever had. Breathtaking views. Layers of Desert, Rocky Mountains, greenery, and snow capped mountains and turquoise rivers. I have never seen anything like it in my 10 years of traveling. I must have snapped a thousand photos on the way. You could cut the atmosphere with a knife in the jeep. That woman was so angry with me but I didn’t care. I just made sure we did lots of toilet stops. To be fair it was cold, wet, raining and I did need a pee a lot.
On arrival we seen Irish walking down the street and checked into his guest house. There was a nice group of us but no sign of hot accent until the following day when he arrived which brought a big smile to my face.
Our group all got on well. We hired motorbikes, ate delicious food, went sightseeing and even found a local pub to play the football and serve cheap beer.
As the days went by I started to like hot accent more and more and we spent every day together. He made me feel good about myself for the first time in years and I had never been this happy in ages. It sounds vain and stupid but I never look in the mirror and think I look good. I actually avoid the mirror. The last 7 years or so I’ve hated my body, my looks and have never had confidence in how I look. I may be confident and happy with my personality and what’s on the inside but I hate what’s on the outside. All my close friends and family tell me I look fine and I’m not ‘fat’ or ugly but it does not make any difference. I don’t know why it was different hearing it from hot accent but I actually listened and felt good about myself. For the first time in ages I felt confident about my appearance and it felt great. As the days went by this feeling grew and I can honestly say I am satisfied with myself and am the happiest I have ever been all thanks to him and his words of wisdom. I have also had a positive impact on his life and his personal issues and we both think it was a blessing we met.
After a day in the she snowy mountains driving on the world’s highest road and playing in the snow it was time for hot accent to leave. I was very sad to see him go but we both planned to meet again in November in Nepal for another meditation/Buddhist retreat.
After a few days of him gone I missed him a lot and after speaking with Cathy, Dave and Irish they egged me on to message him my feelings. Paula, being honest Paula opened her mouth and what always happens to Paula happened. He didn’t feel the same as I did and just wanted to be mates, nothing more. I felt like a right knob. Every guy I like wants to be mates. I don’t get it? I admit I was gutted and had a wee cry. I really liked him and thought he felt the same. He liked me but never had the same feelings I ‘thought’ I had. A few amazing, kind messages followed and I and the situation was all good. I think I just got over excited, as I normally do! We met for a reason, to make each other appreciate what we both have and realize we are both two amazing people. We have made a great friendship and will still do the course in November as planned which is cool. I am looking forward to another month of Tushita. If ten 10 days changed my thoughts, opinions and beliefs imagine what a month will be like!
Me, Cathy and Dave hiked to the mountain village of Yang Lang which took a day. Beautiful scenery stayed in a local’s house and ate amazing local family food. The next day I was aching and felt weak so after a few hours of hitching in the heat I ditched the trek and hitched a ride to Lama Euro with 6 Ladakh cricket players. Cathy and Dave were worried and were reluctant to let me go alone. I persuaded them and relaxed in the mini bus for the next 6 hours thinking of them walking up the dry Rocky Mountains in the heat. I got to Lama Euro and was ill. I had hot accents Bangladeshi flu and was cursing him in my head. I took pills and went to bed. A few hours later Cathy and Dave arrived. They felt terrible leaving me and had checked all the police posts along the way to check if I’d signed inch ha.
Next day we headed to the Lama Euro cham mask festival. The local monks in the monastery parade around and dance in traditional clothes and masks to warn off the evil spirits. It was magical. A group of French tourists embarrassed Europe by having a brawl in the middle of the monastery because of a disagreement about photographs and the monks had to separate 2 women. It was very embarrassing. In a place where compassion is the main focus and these fuckwits are punching each other and throwing water over one another because they have a camera dispute. When the monks left and the coast was clear me and Cathy gave them a piece of our scouse mind whilst Dave minded his own business bless him.
Time to head back to Leh but the bus was taking forever so we hitch hiked in an Indian oil truck with 4 Indians’ 2hour traffic jam followed, we finally caught up with the bus and got back to leh to spend our last night together until we meet again in Jan 2013. They bought me a lovely local turquoise and coral necklace for my early birthday present and we had a little cry on saying goodbye.
I have a new plan. I will return to Oz as planned in July and leave in Nov this year. I will do another course at the Kopan monastery, Nepal in Nov, 6 months in India and then me Cathy and Dave will hitch hike the silk route from china to france.From France we will get the boat to Ireland, boat from Ireland to Holy head and then finally THE FERRY ACROSS THE MERSEY to Liverpool. I think I will spend a good 6 months at home working and living with the family till Cathy and Dave’s wedding in August 2014 to star t saving again. I have the travel bug again. Sod putting a deposit on a house! I’m following my dreams.
Arrived in Nepal and it is boiling? I imagined snow, cold temperatures and hot chain around the log fire. No chance of that. It’s monsoon season,mosquitos are everywhere and it is boiling! It  is a hell of a lot cheaper than India and the Nepali people are beautiful, friendly, humble and sweet.
I have met a cool Australian chick who I lent funds to as she lost her bank cards and we are planning to spend the next few days visiting villages,temples,light trekking and taking it easy. Met a cool Nepali lad called Santosh through Erica in Cairns and we are planning a nice celebration for my birthday next week.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

10 days of meditation,buddhist philosphy, silence and finding the real me.

OK. So I have not wrote a blog for 2 weeks as I had no computer but I kept a written diary and the next few pages you read I have just got up early to type up!
 It has just taken me 7 hours to do this! Enjoy.
Sat 18 May Cathy and Dave arrived today. It was so nice to see them and I really want to stay and hang out in McLeod Ganj with them instead of going to my introduction into Buddhist philosophy and mediation retreat at Tushita. They found it highly amusing everybody in the area stopped to say hi and chat to me. I know all the locals now as I have been here nearly a month and tend to hang about with them a lot. They nicknamed me ‘Paula Lama’ which I and the local lads found highly amusing. We discussed their wedding plans in July 2014 and after a few hours we decided I can still be a guest as well as the chef so I am going to be their personal scouse chef and cook their Thai wedding 3 course meals. Very excited! I am already planning menus and whipping up ideas as we speak! I introduce them to my school class who love them to bits and are sad to see me leave. I take them around the temple and bump into a guy I spotted at a café a week ago. Well I never spotted him I heard him. I don’t know whether he is American or Aussie but his voice is amazing. I think he has a bit of Indian in him I am not sure. It turns out after a quick chat for directions he is heading to Tushita too. Sweet! A week ago I met a really nice lady who lives here and reminds me of Olive. She must be 50 0dd.She lived in Manchester and in 1996 her 22 year old daughter was shot by her boyfriend. He then killed himself. She told me an amazing tale of how she was suicide, losing the plot and came to India to find happiness. She found a guru , she sorted herself out and now feels like it’s time to leave and move on to the next life. She feels like she is wasting time. I listened for hours at one point crying.WOW. This woman is an inspiration. I told him she should write a book. We swapped emails and I got a lovely touching email off her today saying I reminded her of her daughter and what she hopes she would be like now if she was alive. Bless her it was a very touching, emotional email which made me realize how lucky I am and how some people can jus connect only knowing each other for only a few minutes or hours.
The Indian guy who runs the guest house next to my place was very nice to me when I was sick. Checking up if I was ok and we have got to know each other a lot the last 3 weeks. His name is Sunny; he is 27, from Cashmere and is hot as. I don’t find Indian men attractive, they are not my cup of chai but it seems the further north I get the hotter these Cashmere boys are getting! Typical Indian men are very skinny, small and dark skinned, the cashmere men are tall, muscle and light skinned with amazing features and have a great sense of humor. He comes out for a drink with us and when he gets a bit touchy feely I decide to lay down the rules and say we are friends only. I think when I get out of Tushita I may change my mind about that! We will see! When in Rome and all that. I met a funny Irish lad tonight called Tom who is also going to Tushita. We went back to his and had drinks and chatted until we the crazy Russian chick next door complained and we had to leave. The gate was locked so we had to jump over roves from building to building to escape. I was shitting myself.
Mon 20 May DAY 1 of Tushita.
A few days ago I met a girl called Carly who is also going to Tushita. She has battled with her weight and had eating disorders since she was young. I met up with her for lunch before hand and we chatted for ages. We got on like a house on fire and when I was telling her how un confident I am about my body she was in shock. She said she wished she could be as confident as me and said I am lucky. I was surprised. Don’t get me wrong I am confident and will talk to anybody but when it comes down to my looks I have zero confidence at all. Nobody has ever said they wished they were like me. In a selfish way it gave me a bit of a confidence boost and made me realize that I’m not that bad. I hope his course is going to change the way I think and help me get over this ‘looks issue’ and a few other skeletons I have locked up in the Paula closet, the main one being Andy’s death. Irish joins us and we chat about the course. Him and carly are talking about science, philosophy and physics and I do not have a clue. I am worried I won’t understand any of this course. I am only here for the mediation so I will concentrate in that. Everybody starts arriving and ‘hot accent’ turns up. We get chatting and I try to concentrate on what he’s saying without getting distracted by his voice.Amazing.A few Israelis I know arrive and  I now wish after sitting in this little group chatting we were signing up for club med or something and not this course! The resident nun comes out and gathers us in the temple/gompa for a chat about the coming 10 days. There are 85 of us attending the course. We are all given a ‘karma job’s o do for 15 min a day. I and Carly are given the window cleaning job.Great.One of my pet hates when cleaning. I was fuming until I heard that some people had to clean toilets and wash dishes! I got a good job I Think. We are asked to stand up introduce ourselves and say why we were here. I have never been so nervous in all my life. I was shaking, had a lump in my throat, my eyes were filling up with tears and I kept going over and over in my mind what I was going to say. I jumped up quickly and said with a shaky voice and bright red face, “I am here to learn about Buddhism and how to meditate.” It took 2 min and felt like hours. Everybody said the same thing which made me feel a lot more at ease we were all here learning but one girl upset me. She was from Vietnam and stood up and said she was here to get over the sudden death of her father. I started thinking about Andy and got upset. After a few hours briefing she tells us from now on it is silence for 10 days. I walk out the gompa and think shit, this is it. It finally hits me what I have let myself in for. Go back to my room and everybody is quiet. We are all looking at each other thinking what the fuck?!It is so weird not saying goodnight. I pray to god I can do this and not leave before the 10 days is up.
Day 2
The gong rings at 5.45 am and I am already awake. I woke up at 2.30 and could not get back to sleep.6 showers and 10 drop toilets between 85 people led to some queues. Glad I was up early. Bump into Carly at the loo I am about to say hi and realize no alking.Feels weird.Just smile. Mediation till 7.30 then breakfast of porridge and banana before class starts at 9.The teacher was telling us to look at our thoughts and not listen to them. I didn’t have a clue and sat and planned wedding menus, my to do list in Cairns when I get back and thought about my family and mates. Man I wish I had brought coffee I am so tired! Today our teacher talks about greed, money, success and how we should help others. I related to everything he said, found it really interesting and everything he was saying I have been doing for years. I keep thinking of one friend in particular when he talked about greed, money and ego. This course would do her he world of good I think. Sat next to Carly at lunch and had to move too hard not to talk. I was so tempted. It’s so frustrating I keep going to say hi and stop myself. It’s been 16 hours now and it is killing me not talking. I want to tell Carly the guy next to her is the ringer of Gary Glitter but I can’t. I am cleaning windows and Irish is behind me brushing up, normally I would crack a joke but I can’t. Lunch was vegetables, rice and tofu. Meditation was really hard tonight I could not concentrate and kept thinking of the wedding, Sally, Jodie’s baby, Leanne and Hannah. Discussion group today we were allowed an hour’s talking.It felt so nice although I wanted to talk about each other, our interests, travels but we were discussing topics from the previous lesson.
Day 3
Breakfast of porridge again, I really want coffee. I feel really tired. No sleep again kept thinking things. After breakfast I find a note in my bed of Carly saying she has left and good luck. If I give up she will see me for a beer in a few days. I run outside to try and find her and bump ion Irish smoking outside the compound. I passed him the note mouthing “have you seen carly?” “That counts as speaking!” he says. He said he walked her gate she is fine and was bored as she wanted to do meditation rather than lectures. I am relieved she was not upset but worried because I was bored too as some things I did not understand and wondered how I was going to do this as I am a lot less intelligent than her. Today’s afternoon lecture concentrated on physics, atoms,particles,matter,science  and all things I did not know about. Teacher may as well have been speaking Chinese. I took notes but on reading them afterwards I understood 3% of what I’d wrote. People were asking questions and I didn’t even understand what they were asking. Don’t know whether I can do this. I want to but I don’t know what the hell he is talking about. God damn Notre Dame high school teaching me about parts of a flower in science! Meditation was very hard again. I can’t sit right without pain; hot accent is in front of me wearing a distracting tie dye t-shirt which I keep making pictures out of and for some reason he distracts me. We are old to pretend we are lying in a field with beautiful things surrounding us. I imagine being in the field with hot accent listening to his voice.Haha.What’s wrong with me?!Feel really negative tonight. I can’t meditate, can’t concentrate and aunt got a clue what we got taught today.
  Wake up at 4am can’t sleep. So tired. When the gong strikes I huff and puff. I am thinking of leaving. I get to the gimp after porridge and I count 8 empty cushions which makes me think I’s not just me finding it hard and don’t feel as stupid. We are allowed to book a private 10 min app with the teacher today. I put my name down. Went and had a word with him and told him I feel stupid no knowing certain things and how am I supposed to understand if Carly left and she was clever. He told me sometimes you can be too clever and analyze stuff to much.I’s good to be open minded, take in what I do understand and don’t have any expectations. He has been meditating and studying Buddhist philosophy 25 years and still does not understand things and is still learning. I feel a lot better and want to stay and finish what I have started. Today’s class was all about the 6 disturbing emotions we all have, why they arise and how to deal with them. My main disturbing emotion is Andy’s death. I had to walk out the lecture and take a 10 min in the look to have a little cry and clean myself up before heading back in. Our group’s hour discussion was about this topic. The Korean girl who lost her father is in my group. We are talking about how to get over death. I have a massive lump in my throat. I don’t know how the Korean girl is coping; she looks fine she is so strong. I try my best not to get upset but after the hour end up in tears again. Nobody has seen or knows I’m crying which is good. I don’t want people o think I’m pulling a sympathy vote. I wish I had a phone today so I could ring Sally. She would snap me out of this. Even if I could just talk to someone. I am going to break my silence ode and plan a sneaky chat with Irish. I wish Carly was still here. Can’t concentrate in lectures today thinking of Andy it is a waste of time me being here. Last lectures are all about karma I really get into it. Understand everything, relate to everything .Every time we hear about money, greed and attitude I keep thinking of my friend.Man, she is going to get some bad karma for her attitude in life. I kept falling asleep in mediation tonight, it’s so hard. Dinner was soup again. Although they threw some peas in tonight. Did not see Irish at dinner or evening meditation, hope he is ok.Hot accent asked a question today in class, his voice is so sexy. I wish he was the teacher.hahha
Day 5
Feeling very positive today and looking forward to class. I keep smelling toast during meditation. But we never have toast for breakfast so I must be imagining it because I would love toast instead of porridge! I keep thinking of Amanda every time I sand in the oiled queue. There is an old fashioned watering can outside the look and I think she would love it. Funny how you hank of people and things! Then I start thinking of her wedding in the garden with Chris and someone nudges me the toilets free haha.Our lecturer reminds me of the woman who hosts fat club in Little Britain.Everytime an Indian asks a question he pulls a confused face, us is hand behind his ear like he is struggling to hear and asks them to repeat the question. I see Irish talking with the smokers outside and decide to break my silence today. I think if I hadn’t seen other people talking I would have stayed silent. I told him about my Little Britain thought. I should not have done that.Everytime an Indian asks a question we look at the lecturer and I am trying so hard o keep my laugh in and not look at Irish. To be fair I have seen and heard many people whispering. I think if we are allowed to speak at discussion group for an hour if’s not that important. People don’t speak in sight of eachers,monks or nuns but whisper in bed or in smoking section and only for a few minutes. Irish tells me he has been escaping every night having beers, joints and real food. I am not even tempted. I really want to finish this course and not get kicked out. I do ask him to bring me back a jar of coffee though! Found out today in class a local monk died in the lotus position meditating a few days ago. I was his cremation today. That explains the reason I was smelling toast today! Irish escaped at lunch and skipped half the day today to go to the outside and relish in pizza, joints and beer. Mediation was thinking about people who we have fallen out with today. It made me think a lot about a good mate I fell out with before mass so I went back o my room and wrote her a massive letter but now I can’t stop thinking about it as I want to just pos it! Hot accent smiled at me today. Man his smile is amazing too. I keep thinking of him? What’s wrong with me!?Am I going round the twist?!I need o step back and use my new mindfulness skills and think lol.I never thought much about Andy yesterday or today.Had a weird dream last night about people who I have not seen for nearly 20 years.
Day 6
Could not sleep again last night thinking of all the people I have fell out with because of my actions, thoughts and honesty and thinking how I can put things right. Gong goes off and I have been up an hour writing already. I don’t feel tired or fall asleep once today the coffee is working a treat. Mediation was a success today. I never moved an inch once, of course my mind was distracted but my body was not. I often hear people saying their lives have changed because of certain things they experience. I don’t hank my life has changed but my opinions have, my religious beliefs and thoughts and its only day 6! I feel really positive. I am really happy and excited ode as I can see some results in myself. I keep thinking of Andy’s death and thinking negative thoughts, why,how,etc and get sad. Of course I’m not going to magically stop getting sad but I am learning how to. When these thought some to my head I need to hank before I start thinking bad thoughts. With death because I have been brought up a catholic and have been the last 30 years I think when you die you go o heaven or hell. So you can go to a psychic and contact them. You can talk to me and pray to them. I still hold onto the fact that one day I may get to speak to Andy via a psychic or even some days wish I could die for a few min just to see an speak to him. Well I think god, heaven, hell the afterlife it’s all bullshit now. At discussion group we were talking about death and the people in my group are atheists. So I asked if there is no god or after life how do these psychics contact the ded.They thought and explained a psychic can read minds and of course they are reading whets in your mind,waiting for reactions and tell you what you want o hear. When Joanne went o a psychic and told me a hello from Andy I was so happy and sad at the same time. Now I think he woman jus read her mind and never really contacted him. So now I’m thinking like this here is no point in praying and talking to Andy and getting upset as he is not here, he’s gone and I will never hear or see him again so I need to let go. It feels like massive weight has been lifted off my shoulders. The lectures are not about converting us or religion we just learn facts. I am not saying my prayers or speaking to Andy tonight there is no point. I can definitely say I am not a catholic, something I thought I would NEVER say. I am learning so much and it’s all common sense. Rather than switching my brain off me really need o switch it on? I thought meditating was all about switching off. It’s not it’s about switching on! I am learning and discovering new things every day here it’s unreal. Why have I not thought like this before? Ignorence? No confidence? I don’t know. At the beginning of his course I thought I would not understand anything. Now it’s all falling into place and I am so happy. I decided o concentrate on meditation as I wanted to learn how to meditate. Now the tables have turned and I enjoy the philosophy side more! I feel like I don’t want this course to end oday! Yeah, the food is tasteless but throws in a bit of chili sauce and it’s ok. Talking of food Irish has escaped for a steak tonight and a date with a Dutch girl he met last night. I am not even tempted. I am definitely finishing this course. The monkeys raided the roof today during meditation which was funny but scary when one snarled in my direction. Just walked out of mediation class in tears. It was going so well today until now. The teacher tells us think of somebody who has done bad things to us really hurt us and imagines taking all the bad things in their life away from them and giving them all the happiness hey need and everything they want. I am thinking about my knob head ex and thinking of everything that I went through. Then I get angry and think how the fuck can I take all these bad things back?!I keep thinking and getting more upset and get up and leave before I burst out crying in there. I’m in my room now in tears like a knob fuming, how can something 10 years ago still hurt me and upset me now. I make me mad I still think of him he does not deserve to be in my mind. I need to go and find a fogged I wish Irish hadn’t escaped. The Israeli girl left mediation too as she was upset and came to my bed and we hugged and had a little cry together. We didn’t speak we just hugged like crazy women. I went out and go a fag off the little lively Indian man and I made me feel good.But after I smoked it I am angry I did. I have gone 4 weeks without smoking.Damn! How can that fucker sill upset me now?!Fuming. Climb into bed and there is a bar of chocolate under my sheet, must be he Israeli girl. Bless her.
Day 7
Woke up fuming. I am in a bad mood and angry. Regret having a fag too. Feel a bit of a knob for getting so upset but I’m going to ask Irish his opinion today or my teacher if I can catch him alone sometime. I need a phone. I wish I could call Sally.Lizzie gets married today. I can’t stop thinking about her, how she looks, how she feels, who’s there, is she happy, what her dress is like. I think about her all day. I send him good vibes in mediation. Normally I would say a prayer but what’s the point. I never said my prayers last night and it’s the first time my whole life I have actually said I am not saying them .I felt guilty and was tempted but did not say them. Can’t eat brake or concentrate in mediation his morning I am fuming still. Asked Irish’s opinion at lunch and he said nobody could think like that or I would be very hard o wish someone happiness who had done something bad. You would have to have lots of compassion. A Tibetan monk was in a prison and was tortured for 20 years by the Chinese. When we were released the Dalai Lama asked him what was he most sacred of and thinking during his time there. He said he was worried he would lose compassion for the people torturing him. Man, I could never think like this and I think many people feel the same so I need to get over it. The only way I can get over anger for this person is to show the person compassion, that will never happen so whatever. I told him about hot accent and my crush, he pissed himself laughing but said he too has a crush on the Indian girl in his discussion group. Today we talked about me, what is menthe mind, thoughts, lucid dreaming, rebirth and lots of stuff that Sally would be interested or is interested in. I think she would love this place. I hank of her all day a lot am not being preached to  I am just expanding my knowledge and learning a lot.80 percent of my mates would say this is all bullshit but a few people I know would be really interested. A lot of my mates who would say it is bullshit would learn a lot too I think. But I’m not going to go back home ‘preaching’. Each to their own. Can’t get my head round the fact there is a mind, a brain, a body but where is me. I think I get it then the teacher pulls something else out of the bag. I think I have just found my hobbies. I hope when I get back I can continue learning more and improve my meditation skills. It really intrigues me and I don’t want this course to end. Time flies in class. I will never learn or know everything but as long as I’m interested and enjoying it that is all that matters.
Up at 4am can’t sleep again. Done something to my back yesterday at yoga it is killing me.Great.We got eggs for breakfast today! Great! Skipped porridge. We skipped yoga today and were allowed outside the compound and taken for a walk to a local mediation retreat where nuns and monks come for months or even years. The walk there oak 30 min and it were so nice getting out and walking. I miss walking. Funny, I was mindful today and concentrated on the walk and nothing else and ended up with a bagful of rubbish picking it up as I noticed it. Normally walking down the street I is too busy thinking of where I’m going to notice anything. On the way back I spot Liverpool Mark who I met a few weeks before. I waited till everyone was out of sight and had a quick hug, hello and a chat. He was leaving India today. That was meant to happen I got to say a real goodbye. Last night was the first time in the last 2 and half years I have not spoke to Andy intentionally. I wanted to but decided not to. He’s not here and he never will be. I told the Israeli girl after lunch quickly before nun patrol seen us talking and I was so happy to get it out and tell someone how I feel. We hugged and she told me she had something to tell me but the gong struck and we had o get back to class. I can’t wait to tell my family, friends and especially Sally and Nicole. There was a commotion in the room tonight of whispers and torches when I got up one of the girls had a scorpion under her pillow. We managed to get it in a jar and out in the garden. Lucky she checked her bed. I always see her checking her bed at night and I hank paranoid girl. Now I am doing the same!
Everyone looks so tired today and I have had 4 people ask me for a bit of my coffee. It’s taking its toll on everyone all this mediation I think. It’s hot today as well.84 of us in one room the size of a school gym is a bit hot. Could have killed Irish today. I and hot accent were sitting at the same table and Irish sat facing me. He kept looking to his left at ho accent and raising his eyebrows. I was beetroot and dying to laugh. I go up o move, Irish got up to move. Irish moved. I couldn’t even finish my breakfast with embarrassment and I was dying to laugh. I had to go the oiled and compose myself. What am I 14 again? I went the smoking area and give Irish some shit he just laughed and said I need to grow up lol.Hot accent must think I’m a nutter.To be fair though if I had no have broke my silence ban I would not be in this position so that’s my karma! We realized I have been easing with cutlery for a week now. No stained nails or fingers from using my hands.Nice.Been thinking about very one at Cairns 2 today, Hannah and Ryan looking forward to moving in with them, meeting Mini marty,seeing sally and family,olive,Leanne keg…ash it’s all going through my mind. Today we are mediating all day with no philosophy classes. I miss the classes. Finding mediation easy but it’s hot. Cannot get Louis Armstrong ‘We have all the time in the world’ out of my head today? Nearly fell asleep on the last hour of mediation but today went quicker than I thought. Israeli girl was sick in bed today so I brought her lunch she never said hanks she jus said it was too much. I made her ginger tea and after she drank it she said it gave her a high temp and could I not put ginger in it next time. Normally I would have told her to fuck off and make her own. I smiled as calm and thought it’s her behavior speaking not her.Hhahha.She’s sick she’s not thinking straight. Let’s see how this works when I’m off this course loll. I had patience, I worked when I stopped and thought…I am all about being mindful.Hahah.Anoher 4 hour mediation session I took the Israeli girl some tea and we had a chat. Ten years ago at the age of 46 her mum had a stroke and is now paralyzed 100%.She is upset, angry and affected by this still. She was hoping this course would help her sop getting angry and upset and it has in a way. She has realized it’s happened, her mum will not be here forever so she has to make the most of the now, the present. I always wonder what if my mum dies. What if my dad died? What will I do? I get sad and upset. I need to think about now Toni’s all about living in the present and not the past or the future. I can still have aspirations and memories but I need to not dwell on thoughts about the past or future. Two of my friend’s mums have died in the last month and made me realize how lucky I am today and I thought about them a lot wanted to say a prayer again loll and remembered it’s not real! Irish missed all meditations and meals today. It’s funny how I have spoken to only 4 people in here but everyone else I seem to sort of know. We eat together, sleep together,study,meditate and I have nicknames for them allege, hot accent he is late everyday for class, he can’t sit still in mediation so I hank he would be a bad time keeper and a lively person, girl in bed next to me always borrows my shampoo so I think she is tight-jus buy someone Indian lad can’t keep still and brings food into gimp which we were specifically told not o do, he laughs out loud in class a lot think he has Audit’s made me realize that most of the time I speak it’s not worth saying. Does what I say really matter sometimes? Especially when it involves something that does not concern me or involve me. I think now when I speak I will think twice before I speak especially if it concerns other people. Irish is not at the smoking area giving his daily Dalai Lama speech. The Indian man tells me with his lively head wobble and hand actions Irish have left a day ago. We had to meditate about someone close to us who has died tonight. I got upset. The nuns and monks next door were chanting beautiful songs and it all got to me. I sat and thought and calmed myself down so I didn’t have to leave the room but still filled up and had a lump in my throat. I feel like I’ve took a million steps backwards. I suppose it’s not that bad of course I’m going to feel sad sometimes I’m only human. Time to go to bed. I am sad I am leaving.
One thing I will miss about this place is the peace and quiet. I Think I have taken it for granted. Dreading going back into the town with all the car horns, noise and commotion. I don’ want to leave today. I have been up since 2are with the Israeli girl she is really sick. I sat with her and mopped her brow, got her water and just sat with her outside as she was scared to be alone. She is very ill. The hospital does no open till 8am.She has asked me to go with her. I really don’t want to as it’s the last day but I can’t say no. I put her back to bed while I go to morning meditation and go and tell the nun on duty she’s sick. The nun comes the room and we are allowed to speak as I’s an emergency. The nun is lovely from Germany with tattoos and asks her name. Rachel her name is. I introduce myself. We both burst out laughing. The last 7 days we have been hugging, having sneaky conversations and really connect with each other and on the last day we find out each others name. After meditation I go to get Rachel to go the hospital but she wants to go alone and feels a bit better. I am secretly happy as I want to stay and finish. I really wish it was not over. Everyone looks so happy and there are massive smiles everywhere. We had our morning meditation session but I couldn’t concentrate thinking about what I am going to do on the outside. After meditation hot accent comes over and asks me for a coffee with his sexy smile. I think he is asking for cough liquid I am so nervous. I am such a knob. After asking him to repeat himself 3 times I give him the coffee. I think I looked nervous. What a knob! Haha. We went back to the gimp for our last session of feedback and we were allowed to talk but told not to get too excited. It was so funny. I had a girl that came up to me and tell me she thought I had such good energy and she used to love watching me smile and really wanted to get to know me she said I looked like fun. One guy came and we hugged each other to congratulate each other like we had known each other for years. Everyone was hugging, shaking hands and smiling. We all had a picnic lunch together and I decided to try and get to know all the people I had ‘mentally’ connected with the last few days. So all the girls and boys that made an effort to smile at and ones I thought looked happy I organized a place to meet when the course was over later that day. I decided to invite hot accent. I went over to him and made general chit chat, swapped face books and then he asked me what I’m doing later. I told him the name of the place where we were to meet and took his number. Paula Morris being forward?
Leaving the retreat I bumped into Irish on the way nod must have talked for an hour without stopping for breath and got the last 10 days of talking out my system. I told him to come for drinks and I would be his wingman with the Indian chick he liked. I headed back to meet Cathy and Dave but they had gone out for the day. I prayed they would return before 5 so I could put a different set of clothes on and look nice! My hotel had forgotten to save me a room so Sunny came to the rescue and give me one at his hotel. He was very happy to see me and we sat and chatted for a few hours over coffee. He asked me for a drink damn! Lol! So, I told him I was heading out with friends but I would catch up with him tomorrow. I thought Cathy and Dave may have my phone turned on so I used his phone to call my number. When I dialed in my number it came up saved as beautiful girl Paula which was a bit embarrassing. I headed to the internet café to face book Cathy and Dave and bumped into hot accent. He was with his travelling buddy. I asked them where they met. He told me on a gay dating website. I was gutted. Then they both burst out laughing hahah.I wonder what my face looked like. No Cathy and Dave so I put my 10 day old clothes on and headed the restraint. Word had spread about the meeting and there were about 40 of us in total. I invited hot accent to sit next to me and we sat and talked for hours. We had lots in common and he was a good laugh. Been there a few hours and Irish reckons I’m ‘in’ loll. I hear someone shout me from the road below and look over the balcony and it’s Sunny. He has had a few drinks and asks me would I like to go for a drink. I tell him I’m with a friend but he is welcome to join us-praying he refuses-he does and leaves.He comes  inside 10 min later and asks me who the guy is, who all these people are and says he has missed me. I send him home and say he is drunk. The restraint closes at midnight and me,Irish,Indian chick he likes, hot accent and 2 other s decide to head to  Irish’s pad near mine which is an hour walk from where they all stay. Everyone is worried about how they are going to get home so me and Irish tell them not to worry we have spare beds.Lies.We have a double bed each. We go to the local Indian pool club and it’s closed but a quick bang on the door and they open up for us. We sit talking till 5 am. Hot accent is from Bangladesh but moved to Melbourne when he was 8.He is now 25.I keep my age to leave and Indian chick is going to Irish’s, the 2 others are walking back and me and hot accent are heading to my place. We creep down the 86 steps to my guest house so we don’t wake Sunny as I feel bad on him and sit up talking until 9am.Dave and Cathy knock at 10 am and are getting on a 13 hour bus to Armritsar.No way. I agree to follow them in 2 days as I need to rest and chill.hey thought that would be the case and head off to 47 degree armritsar.Sod that. Well, no need for details but let’s just say the 5month sex drought is no more and this guy is really nice. I never felt awkward, paranoid or did the whole Paula rigmarole of I feel fat. Well maybe I did a first but this guy is so nice. Full of compliments, funny, nice personality and A HOT ACCENT! HAHA Sunny wasn’t too impressed when he seen he leaves my room in the morning and gave me a look of death. I asked him what his problem was and he apologized saying he was Hun govern. Later that day we meet up for dinner and have another night talking for hours-well maybe me chatting his ear off. Next day we meet up with Irish and hear his tale of how after all the ground work he put in, in 2 nights he ended up with a little kiss.haha bless him. Next day me and hot accent were both leaving going in different directions and had a farewell lunch with Carly and said our goodbyes. We may bump into each other in the next couple weeks or not. I think I learnt a lot from this guy as well as Tushita. He gave me a lot of self confidence and made me feel good about myself. I believe everyone you meet you meet for a reason. I know all my mates and family say you’re no fat, you’re not fat, you’re not ugly blab la blab but you never listen to those closest to you. Hearing it from someone you barely know is a different story. I feel a lot more confident and need to stop thinking like a kid. I’m 30 and need to grow up it’s not all about my figure I should appreciate what I have egg my AMAZING personality loll and get on with it. So yeah let’s just say I am the happiest I have ever been in the last few years and am looking forward to thinking positive and looking at my life in a different view!
5th June
Sunny was an ass hole when I left yesterday. I said I’m leaving he said well, whatever.Sweet.Me and Irish headed to Srinagar to meet up with Cathy and Dave. The Indian chick is heading here too that’s more the reason he came.21 hours travelling in 47 degree heat is not comfortable. Driving through Punjab and stopping for lunch I got a million stares more than normal. The Punjabi’s are terrible for it. Arrive in Cashmere. My god these people are stunning. It’s like a catwalk of models walking down He Street. The men are gorgeous but sill all has the Indian playboy mentality. Met a few nice cashmere lads with Irish Indian chick ode and spend the day sightseeing, went to one of the man’s houses for an amazing lunch cooked by his wife. He lived in an amazing 10 bedroom mansion with a massive vegetable patch. We ate fresh salad for lunch from the garden. Last night they took us for a nice drive in their flash cars to a really beautiful river spot. We had ONE beer each after the 40min drive then headed to the local Cashmere bib house. I ate bib mutton after not eating meat for 5 months. It was nice but I felt afterwards I would have enjoyed a big plate of bib veggies instead. I asked the Indian girl did she like Irish or is he wasting his time. She did. Cool! I played cupid told Irish this and he left me this morning to travel with her. I am sharing my room with an Israeli we met on the bus so we both save costs. It was really weird climbing into bed with someone I didn’t know but we got chatting today and he’s sound. Nice guy just travelling the world like me. Waiting for CATHY AND Dave to arrive so we can plan our next 2 week adventure!

Saturday, 19 May 2012


Up until today I have not wrote about ‘wankers’ in the blog so I do not worry my mum and dad.But after today’s wanking incident I want to tell you all about the ‘Indian wankers.’
My first ‘wanker’ experience was in Shimla. Me,Sorcha,Kiera,Steve and Sally where strolling down the street and a lad of about 25 ran past us and stood in a door way at the side of the street.We thought he was having a pee.He then turned to face us and started wanking.What did we do?We just walked past him, not uttering a word,we were shocked and disgusted but what do you do? Steve started pulling out wanking jokes and we just carried on as normal.Thats the thing in India nothing suprises me anymore.Around every corner there is something weird and just when you thought it couldn’t get any weirder BAM! A wanker pops out!
A few weeks after that I seen a man wanking in a bus station whilst I was sitting on a bench waiting for a bus.He was standing at the side of a bus wanking looking straight at me.I moved where I could not see him and where he could not see me and carried on eating my samosa.
A few nights ago  I was walking home from school,it was dark and I was alone.I seen the Indian man in front of me standing in the road and did not notice he had his lil indian penis out.As I got closer I realised he did and speeded up walking to the left of him.You know when you walk down the street and someone is in your way,you are both going in the same direction and you sort of do a dance to get past each other?It was like that.He just stood there wanking,I moved left,he moved left,Imoved right,he moved right. When I finally pushed past him I ran for my life whilst screaming ‘sister fucker’ down the street.Sister fucker,a bit like mother fucker is the worst sware word you can say to an Indian.That is the first time I have used this word in India.He was really skinny and I probably could have smashed him but it terrified me.
 To top it all off last night I was in bed.There are bars on my windows and the windows were locked.I was watching 8 mile with my headphones in and seen something in the corner of my eye.The window is about 3 ft from my bed.The light was off in my room and I could see that there was someone peeping through the window.All I could see was eyes and a nose.My stomach was turning,my heart beating fast and I just did’nt know what to do!! Itried to feel around for my phone without him noticing and set off the ring tone.I then pretended to speak to my invisible friend who would be coming to my room in a few minutes.He stayed there a few secs then ran off.I jumped up and checked all the locks before jumping under the covers.I stayed under the covers all night.I could not sleep for hours.I think it was probably one of the most scariest moments in India-apart from when I had weed in my pants and thought we were going the police station!I reported it to my hotel manager  today and he told me not to worry nobody can get into my room,keep it  locked..Well, that makes it ok then?
Today at school I cried with laughter. Mr.long gave me his note pad to write something down.I turned to the back page and there were various questions he had wrote.
‘’Have you ever had sex with a goat? Have you ever had sex with a dog? Have you had a penis in your ass?’’ He was bright red with embarrassment as was I, but I was trying to keep my laugh in.
‘’Have you asked anybody these questions?’’ I asked. He told me no. ‘’OK. Well make sure you don’t.Or you will never get an English girlfriend.OK?’’ He agreed and took back his book.
I had tears rolling down my face.The other men wanted to see what the comotion was about and dragged the book off him.They did not find it funny .One of the monks could not understand and Mr.Long tried to translate, I cut him off and we moved onto our next subject. Homosexuality.
One of the men asked me do I know anybody that is gay.When I said yes the class was amazed and started asking all sorts of questions.I decided to use Andy and Pauli as my subjects and told them how they met,how they got married and showed them photographs of the happy couple. ‘’But they are so handsome,why can’t they find a girlfriend?’’ “How will they have children?” “Do you think it is ‘normal?’” I was bombarded with questions and after an hour of debating about ‘gay people’ only one of the group thought it was sort of ‘ok’.
In Tibet when a man marries a woman if he has a brother/s it is tradition that the brother shares his wife with the other brother/s. I explained to them how in the UK we do not do that and they must understand cultures are different.I told them if this happened with my Brothers there would be a murder. It’s funny they thought sharing their wife was fine but homosexuality was not normal.They told me in the west they hear about divorce,break ups,affairs etc and in Tibet everybody is happy.So  I asked my student  who lives with his brother and his wife and 3 kids,
 “So your wife.When you come here to school, you say bye bye to your wife and she says bye bye to you and then she makes love to your brother?”  “Yes” he replied laughing at my honesty. I asked him who the kids call father? He said the two eldest call him dad and the brother uncle but the youngest child calls them both father. Very confusing, but  I agree with him if it works why not? They are all happy and not hurting anybody so why the hell not?
Mr.Long then asked me would I like it. “No,one man is enough for me”I replied. “That is good!I have no brothers!” He said. The class erupted in laughter. Mr.Long is hilarious and quick.Any chance he gets to hit on me he will but in a jokingly way. Today’s class was fun, I left giggling thinking of all the random shit we chat about.
Today I feel like shit.I am hot,sweaty,weak,I have diorheaa and a massive headache.I keep feeling like I want to be sick but can’t. I cancelled school today and spent the day sleeping,shit,sleeping,shit and then spend thenight vomiting.
I can’t find the strength to get to the Doctors which is a hike up the 184 stairs that lead to the main road so I stay at the hotel drinking lots of water. Tseng texts me and tells me if I need anything to call her.Bless her.
Last night I got so scared something serious was going to happen to me I got the hotel manager’s mobile number and asked could I call him if I was scared or needed a doctor.I spent half the night on all fours vomitting nothing with massive stomach cramps.
Today I seen something I did not want to see in the toilet.WORMS.Little,skinny,white wriggly worms are coming out of my ass.Shit! Time to go the doctors.It took me a while getting up the stairs in the blistering heat,I was borking with the smell of the sewer that runs down every Indian street and felt like I was going to faint.I ran to a local shop and asked the man could I sit in the shade of his shop for a bit. Ten min later I was walking to the doctors feeling like death.4 hours later and I had a bag of pills,some electrolyte powder and a diagnosis of a stomach bug and worms.He told me I must have had a bit of dirt under my nail or something before I ate.Great.There is a reason for cutlery INDIA!!! God damn it! I buy some anti bacterial gel for my hands and sware to use it every hour of the day. Roll on Australia and cutlery!I will have probably forgotten how to use a fork and knife by the time I am back!
 I see and smell sewers everyday in India but today my body could not take it.I dry retched all the way home from the doctors whilst people gave me strange looks along the way.
Today I feel a bit better and have only been sick once.I still have diorheaa and worms.
Last night I was up vomitting but I feel fine today so I am going to school.
Just finished school.My class told me I did not look handsome today.To be fair I look like shit but I feel a lot  better.I can’t sit still the worms are wriggling!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Today I feel fresh and healthy and after 3 days of eating only 2 slices of toast and beans I ate a bowl of plain rice and vegetable momo.Momo how I have missed you.I did feel fine until a few hours later. Toilet!!!!! I am so glad I am in a room with a normal toilet.God bless you western toilet you are my saviour today.
 Another day and I have no squits,no pains but my little wormy visitors are still here.At school today I met another teacher from Liverpool who is taking my place and we figured out we know each others friends.He has not seen his friend who is my mate’s father in 20 years.Weird,it really is a small world.
I told my class I it was my last lesson today, printed them off some photographs and wrote them a nice card. They were very appreciative and  sad. Mr.Long in particular had tears in his eyes when we hugged.He also tried to cop a feel of my ass when we took photos..hahah he cracks me up! They presented me with a white scarf which the Tibetan people use as an offering(puja) or blessing and gave me lots of hugs and handshakes. I was really sad but stayed strong and never cried(in front of them.)
When I left the class I checked my emails and to my delight I have been given a place on a ‘Introduction to Buddhism’ course. A ten day course involving meditation, philosophy teachings , and all things to do with Buddhism. I am so excited and happy . I will not speak for 10 days which I am fine about and hope at the end of the course I know a lot more about Buddhism, how to meditate and I hope I will have gained ‘something’ from this experience.  There will be no laptop,mobile phone,internet ,no talking,no caffiene or connection with the outside world so I am going to sneak in a note pad and write daily so I can update the blog on my release! So, it looks like I am not leaving McLeod Ganj at all , well not just yet.My class will be so happy when I surprise them tomorrow!I will have another 4 days here before my course begins in the Tushita monestry in Dharamkot. If you would like to see what I am doing and where I am going click on