Sauraha looked touristic, Pokhara is another dimension! The town is beautiful along the Fewa Lake, but the lakeside is full of restaurant and guest houses. Getting a bed could be tricky in the high season: I came in November, the month hosting half of all yearly tourists!
Back to Pokhara after the trek, I went to the place I stayed before where I let my big luggage. I called them in the morning to reserve a bed, but it was probably already too late: when I arrived there, they were full and had to look for another place. After giving back my rented equipment, I asked all places around and finally got a small single room for Rs 350. I spent 3 days/4 nights there, quite lazy in the beginning dealing with some office stuff on my computer.
I realized I would get more money back from the Finanzamt (tax office) in Germany than spent so far in this trip, taxes I paid in advance, calculated from the revenue of my previous years! Working full time as single is not really worth it: with more than 1/3 of your revenue going to the taxes, you are actually working for the others, the system, or your old days if you stay there.
I also realized that all trains in India to Kolkata on the 18th (I have my next flight on the 20th from there) are already full, I should have book before coming in Nepal!
On Sunday the 10th, I rent a bicycle in the afternoon. I went for some drive around and sightseeing in the south: I visited a cave starting with a Shiva temple and ending behind the “devils water fall”. Nice but far from those saw in Poland (salt mine by Krakow) or Sardinia, Italy (by Alghero).
I initially planned to go to Kathmandu on the Monday, but spending a few time with Haggit, a girl from Israel I met a few time at the end of the trek, convince me to try the paragliding as well. So we both went for ½ hour fly over Pokhara on Monday. The Russian managed company brought us to the top of the Saragnot hill and I could have a tandem fly with one of this Russian pilot. Flying like that is a very nice sensation, so quiet. A little like enjoying the underwater by diving: amazing, beautiful and peaceful! A pity that the weather was a little hazy these days, we could not see the Annapurna range anymore! Flying there seems to be pretty easy since the wind are almost always the same every day! But my pilot was a little too fast and we landed after just 12min fly. We were both sorry and he finally gave me half of the money back (5000 Rs for 30min).
The jeep brought us back to their office in Pokhara, and went from there to the “Sun Welcome” restaurant I got recommended. I could indeed enjoy their spendid dal baaht, although I got better ones during the trek (I think about the one with the Nepali family in Chame and the one I got in the Tilicho Peak hotel in Shree Karga after asking explicitly for a spicy preparation: I got ginger in my dal, fantastic!)
In the afternoon, I visited the “International Mountain Museum”, quite far from the lakeside, but interesting. I could learn more about the people of Nepal and the crazy expeditions reaching the 8000m summits in the 50es.
As said, the track chosen in Nepal so far were so touristic so that they changed my way to look at it: at the beginning and after 2 months in India, I got the impression everything was too expensive, that we get ripped off as white guys, and wanted to do it cheaper. It took me a few days trekking to accept the situation and better enjoy it, thinking back in term of € instead of cheap Indian Ruppies. Actually, Indians told me before Nepal would be even cheaper that India: it might well be the case for Nepali, and indeed, the accommodation and food can be cheaper, but the prices get easily doubled in the most touristic areas (like it is as well in the main attractions in the West, maybe thus not in such big ratios). Because of the mountains and lesser density, the transportation is however much more expensive in Nepal than India, I miss the so cheap railways system!
Anyway, I finally enjoyed the western part of the place and got more bakery items than ever (Apple pie or crumble, cake, chocolate croissant, cinnamon roll, etc, even if most of the time, they are not as good as back home, actually only very few are very good)