Diwali Festival of Lights, Katmandu, Nepal :
a unique account of magical travel experiences in Katmandu, Nepal
"I had decided to include a brief visit to Nepal, so as to partake of the mountain culture, the Diwali Festival of Lights, and a glass or two of the rice beer called chang which I had heard so much about.
I left from Varanasi on a two day bus journey to Katmandu, and, as always, there were delays and unexpected breakdowns, and so, into the second afternoon it was obvious that we would not make our destination until very late in the evening. Although time had ceased to concern me at that point in my travels, I was admittedly anxious to get to Katmandu because, on top of the reasons mentioned above, I was also holding onto a thread of hope that I would meet up with a woman from Canada, whom I had fallen helplessly in love with during the previous year in Vancouver, although no tight bond had grown between us. And so I had left for India, and she for Thailand, and we had agreed to leave a message for the other person at a specific hotel in Katmandu, were either of us to get there on our separate journeys, so that we could attempt to meet up somewhere, if fate was to have it that way.
Well, to be sure, as providence always provides, I was on that tardy bus heaving its way over the broken dirt roads, winding through the mountains, and every once in a while the bus would stop in one of the sparse hamlets along the route, so as to take on more new passengers, all of whom were now forced to ride on the roof, as the bus was already crammed turgid with humanity inside. A few hours before arriving in Katmandu we stopped again, and I got off to release my bladder, and suddenly ran head long into the woman I adored, who a few hours earlier had gotten on top of the very bus I had been on for almost two days now, but I hadnít noticed because she had been sent up top. And so I had been riding along for the past many hours, anxious to know if I would ever see my heartís desire again, and she had been riding but a few feet above me all the while, and all you can do when the loving universe works such magic upon you is throw up your arms in bewildered hallelujahs, and Ömake love.
Things like this happen, to be sure. A similar story comes from a very good friend of mine who was in India alone a few years after that episode of mine, and she was on a bus heading through the plains when she got to talking to another westerner sitting in the seat beside her. It turned out, as they soon realized, that they were both from western Canada, had mutual acquaintances, and, in fact, were cousins who had never before met, though they knew of each other.
Oh, the ties are deep and unbreakable in the magic carpet woven by the invisible weaver who plays each thread into the unimaginable pattern desired at any specific place, at any specific time.
The spirit runs as thick as matter, and is matter, and all the separation and agony of the world are merely patterns in the living design, and the union and joy are but colors in those patterns which are not separated from the carpet, nor weaver, nor wearer, nor loom."