Why Nepal?

By Lynna - May 10, 2018

When casually bringing up in conversation to my friends / acquaintances that I would be going on a trip to Nepal as my 25th birthday gift to myself... as a solo trip, no less...the three initial questions I would receive would be one of the these:

  • "Why?" 
  • "What's in Nepal?" 
  • "Where is that?" 
I would bristle slightly at the seemingly offhand, almost flippant questions but then find that I would struggle to answer the questions too (well not the last one, I'm pretty decent with my geography at least, phew!), but not because I didn't have a few ideas of what the reasons could be, but because those answers were not true to the real reason I was going.

Nepal came to me through multitude of signs and synchronicities that were way too coincidental and way too frequent to be purely by chance. I would go about my day and I would see random words / places / signs / objects related to Nepal / Kathmandu / Himalayas pop up everywhere, and I mean everywhere. This happened for many months and I finally promised I would put Nepal on my list of travel destinations even though it had never been on there in the beginning.

I then traveled to Colorado where there is a great community of Nepalese / Tibetan locals who live there and I had so much fun shopping there -- buying gemstones and incense and mala beads. I was then advised by a local bartender to try the Nepalese cuisine at a nearby restaurant because it was really authentic and delicious (she was right). I then met and had a great conversation with one of the staff members at the restaurant who told me he had moved from Nepal with his family and this was their family restaurant. I told him, “Meeting you is yet another sign that I must go to Nepal!” Little did I know just how true that was.

A few more months passed; I kept seeing signs almost every day or at least a couple times a week.

Then came the dreams.

They were so incredibly vivid, I was almost positive I had astral projected out of my body there. There is a particular dream that comes to mind: I am walking on a dusty dirt road among a huge crowd of people, the dust floating in the air creating a kind of fuzzy haze. There are people milling about all around me, talking and chatting while children laugh and play nearby. I approach an ancient temple at a crossroads, and there are an innumerable amount of incense sticks lit all over the temple, the smoke from them clouding together and wafting lazily into the air; I can so very clearly smell the incense and I can hear the prayer chants going on inside the temple, and the occasional ringing bell or gong. I could taste the dust in the air, feel the hot sunshine beating down on my skin causing a sweat to break out on my forehead.

Suddenly, I awoke, near tears, feeling so absolutely torn from somewhere that I so clearly needed to be. Somewhere I was probably literally just at. Somewhere I felt so utterly at home, and filled with so much love and a sense of belonging it almost overwhelmed me. It was that moment I decided, I need to go to Nepal. As soon as I possibly can. 

So the whole reason I struggled to answer those questions was because it was never a simple answer like “because I want to hike the Himalayan mountains”. It had never been that. It wasn’t even that I wanted to go, it was more like I needed to go. I feared being looked at strangely, or being met with empty, confused expressions if I exposed the true reason that I have always known deep down all along: I was always meant to be there. There was never a moment that I did not belong there. My soul yearns so deeply to be there. I have never felt so much overflowing love for a place before, let alone a place I had never even been, seen, or heard much about. 

And as for that dream that I described above? I did in fact walk on a road that looked, smelled, and sounded impossibly exactly like that dream; as I approached the temple and heard the prayers inside, I promptly burst into tears in the middle of the street. I was finally home.

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