Trek, Trek, Trek ya bodayyy
03.05.2013 - 03.05.2013 32 °C
So the day before we were to trek, my stomach wasn't feeling great and my cold had still not gone. I decided to do even less today and just pump myself full of antibiotics and vitamins to try and get in better nick for the trek to Poon Hill.
We met up with Jenna (From Pushkar fame) and went for lunch and chats. Jenna told us she was going to do Poon Hill all by herself!! I came over all mom-like and quizzed her on how she would cope, why she was going alone, what would happen if she stumbled and hurt herself or what not etc... I was a bit worried about her going on her own, but she said there'd be loads of people doing the same trek. She would meet lots of people in tea houses along the way, and would be fine. I think she would have liked to do our yoga trek, but the cost was a bit much.
We pottered about later getting everything ready for our trek. We rented some sleeping bags (mine stunk!!) and bought some t shirts, wipes, snacks etc. : )
Our trek was with Purna Yoga. It was a combination of yoga, meditation and trekking. We would be doing 6 days trekking - a variation of the Ghorepani - Ghandruk loop in the Annapurna Range. This trek would venture through Gurung Villages like Tidkehinga, Tadapani, Chuli, Kat Donda and would peak (boom) with a dawn trip to Poon Hill (3200m) to watch the sunrise over the mightly Annapurna Mountains. As ours was yoga based, we would be doing meditation and yoga for 2 hours every morning before trekking for 6 - 8 hours, then guided meditation or Yoga Nidra as it's known in the evening. Here's the blurb on yoga nidra..
Yoga nidra or "yogi sleep" is a sleep-like state which yogis report to experience during their meditations.
The practice of yoga relaxation has been found to reduce tension and anxiety, headache, giddiness, chest pain, palpitations, sweating etc
Yoga nidra refers to the conscious awareness of the deep sleep state, referred to as "prajna".
Basically it's kinda like being hypnotised imo.
I personally thought the trek sounded awesome and it would be a bit easier than the normal Poon Hill trek as that takes 4 - 5 days. (pffffft)
We went to the Purna Yoga Centre to drop off our duffel bags. (The trek included all food, accommodation, porters, transportation, guides, duffel bags, yoga, yoga mats etc etc) I think we were late to the studio as when we went upstairs, we discovered our yoga guide Mahesh sitting in the lotus position at the head of the class, while a few people waited patiently on their yoga mats. Oops. So Mahesh gave us the lowdown on the trek and what we would be doing. I.e. Rise at 6am, tea, yoga and meditation at 6.30, breakfast at 8.30am and trekking at 9.30am. We'd stop for lunch and then continue trekking for another few hours. Then when we arrived at our destination for the day, there'd be stretching, Yoga Nidra and dinner.
He said days 2 and 3 would be the most difficult as there would be a lot of upping and downing. Yikes!
After our instructions, we were invited to stay for a yoga class, so we did. It was ace! Not too hard but really very relaxing and rejuvenating!
So off we trotted to Yoga Purna for a round of meditation, joint loosening and yoga! The meditation bit was very hard for me. We had to sit perfectly still for 15 minutes in the lotus position. Who chose that position to be the position of serenity???? It feckin hurts. My back hurt and my legs got pins and needles. The joint loosening bit was cool though and the yoga class was great. After yoga, we met the rest of the group for breakfast. 6 women in total - all solo female travellers from all over the globe and all great fun.
There was me and Lindsey, Zemming (29 Singapore, married, on a years travelling without the husbo..haha. score!), Krissey (34, California, divorced, bubbly, super positive and had a tendency to shout ''Allegria'' quite a lot. Allegria means happiness), Beate (39, German, loves hiking and is training to be a Yoga teacher. Would like to open a Yoga-hiking B&B in the Alps), Kathy (separated, out on 10 weeks travelling and doing the Annapurna Base Camp trek).
We had the first of many delicious breakfasts of muesli with fruit and curd, eggs, bananas and chocolate buns. We also met our other guide Sumit, and our 4 porters who didn't say much at first. We piled into the jeep and drove through gorgeous mountainous scenery for 2 hours ish to our starting point - Naya Pul.
We donned our souvenir Purna Yoga Trekking hats, grabbed our trekking poles and started off through lovely little stone alleyways with cosy rustic restaurants aimed at trekkers dotted along the way. We headed up past the river and on up a steep road into the hills. It was a hot day and the skies were clear. Not clear enough to see the Himalayas, but we had some lovely lush country scenery keeping us inspired as we walked.
After lunch, where we spied a big group of bufty men trekkers, (phwoar) , we trekked on. I stayed behind yapping to Kathy and Sumit but they were very slow as they stopped a lot to take pictures, so I decided to trek on a bit on my own (the rest of the gang had gone ahead already). So I'm walking along beside a load of ponies and I look up the hill beside me to admire the view, and what do I see, only a small man in a red cap with his hand down his pants having a bit of a fondle of himself! I was like WTF?? I expected this type of shit in India, but not in Nepal!!! Well I was Nappauled! (boom). He kept watching me and following me as I wandered along and when I looked up, he'd duck his head and hide! LOL... yet gross. I decided to wait for Kathy & Sumit and pointed out this public pervert to them as they approached. It was so funny to see his red cap bob up and down in the bushes as he tried to spy on us... WEIRDO!!
Anywho, I stayed with the two lads for another while and then plodded on again. Luckily after ten mins, we reached Hille - our place of rest for the evening. I got a cold lemon drink on arrival, and when Kathy landed, we all did a few stretches together with Mahesh before hitting the showers.
Later we had our first yoga Nidra session with Mahesh. The six of us all squished into 3 beds and lay beside each other covered with our blankets. Mahesh then spoke softly to us for 40 minutes and put some of us in a trance. It was quite like hypnosis! We all drifted in and out of what he was saying. The goal was to try and stay awake for the whole time, but it's very difficult after a 6am wake up call, 2 hours of yoga and 5 hours of trekking. :D I managed to hear most of what he was saying. He made us mentally countdown from 27 to 1 and told us to visualise a lovely pond full of colourful fish and with a golden Buddha in the lotus position in the middle. The pond I visualised was full of lillies and I spent quite some time trying to get the lillies out to see the fish! :D It was very relaxing though. 2 of the gals fell asleep and were snoring away the whole time. he he.
At the end Mahesh told us his joke of the day!
Dinner was delicious and was followed by a rowsing Nepali dance show in our tea lodge. The guy who ran the guest house, put on some Nepali pop music and did a little dance for us. It was so funny! This guy would give Warren Swords a run for his money. He was bumpin and grindin away - he knew all the words and had all the sexy moves off pat. We were cracking up. Then he got myself, Zemming, Lindsey and Krissy up to dance with him as well. It was a howl, busting sexy moves in this Nepali kitchen high up in the hills. We were swingin each other around the place, narrowly missing the locked cupboards full of chocolate and booze.
Great first day of trekking. Fab scenery, good long enjoyable walk that wasn't tooooo strenuous, delicious food and lovely fun positive people! : )