Sunday, December 16, 2012

My Last Day in Nepal

Farewell Kathmandu 

We shared our final day in Nepal visiting temples and enjoying our hosts and each member of our group for one more precious time together.

Katy, Waveney and Sheila waiting for our day to begin

Swayambhunath
 The name means "self-risen".  The valley of Kathmandu was once a lake and this hill, now topped by this temple, spontaneously rose from the waters.  These brightly painted Buddha statues are at the bottom of the hill and were our view as we entered to grounds.


Buddha on the top of the hill.

We were lead up the steep, stone pilgrim stairway by our mascot, Luna, to this section of the temple.
The Great Tunderbolt.
The brass-plated dorje is a symbol of the power of
enlightenment and destroys ignorance. It
indicates male power, while the healing bell
represents the female power.

The Stupa

This monument hints at celestial perfection with its gleaming, gilded spire and white washed dome. The four faces of Buddha staring out in all directions 
represent unity and the insight of the Buddha.  The white ball on the very top
is the earth. The prayer flags have written mantras on them carrying requests to the heavens above for peace and love for all of us on earth. 
View of Kathmandu from Swayambhunath

Monkeys

They are everywhere!

Our Farewell Dinner

This is Kaji's restaurant.  He actually closed it to other guests so we could enjoy our last meal together. Notice our final tongba being offered on the left.  After our fantastic dinner Chandra and Debbie presented each of us with a handmade, white cloth bag colorfully embroidered. This is worn on the back to carry everything and anything while working in the fields, trekking the hills or shopping the markets.  You may have seen them on many of my pictures in this blog. This gifts were made by Chandra's sister.  It must of taken her weeks to complete all 20 of them. Unfortunately I did not get a pic of all of us
modeling our generous gifts from someone who loves Chandra and Debbie and so loves all of us as well.