The Nepal group is back from the trek and will head to their host community tomorrow! We had the opportunity to check in with Grant this morning (evening Nepal time) while Avy was leading an evening activity for the group. The group arrived in Syabru Bensi, a small village about an hour north of Dunche, yesterday. They spent the day taking showers, doing laundry and enjoying a delicious lunch and dinner. Everyone is happy and healthy!
The trek proved to be as epic as expected with long days on the trail through rain and clouds ending at warm and welcoming teahouses in villages along the way. Despite rain on most days, and some leeches, the group kept their packs on and feet moving forward -climbing to higher elevation each day. At the peak of the trek, just above 12,000 feet, Avy and Grant lead the group in a special ceremony. They strung up prayer flags, shared one thing to leave behind and one thing to take away as they continue on after reaching this peak. This was a meaningful time for the group as they reflected on all they have experienced before as individuals, and all they will now have to look forward to and experience together as a group.
In the evenings the group spent time with Bolle, Binod and Ratna, three of our local contacts who accompanied the group on the trek. Bolle and Binod whipped up meal after meal, and Ratna spent time with group preparing them for each day ahead along with stories into the night. On the trail the group took to singing and will soon be working even more on one particular song as they prepare for their introduction to the host community.
Avy and Grant feel the group is strong and everyone is connected to each other! Tomorrow the group has a very packed day as they will alternate traveling by bus and hiking out of Syabru Bensi – to Dunche – to Ranipauwa and finally, to the village of LamagonThey will take some time for lunch in Ranipauwa and will visit a Hydro-electric power plant which everyone is quite excited for.
The students are eager to find out their homestay partners and meet their new host families! We are excited for them!