The Trek

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For several years now students in Nangi, Nepal have been enjoying English lessons via Skype thanks to the tireless efforts of Toya. Toya gets students to the lessons, works his magic on the school’s aging laptop and climbs mountain peaks to upgrade the internet equipment. For the past year, he has been taking English lessons with The School Inside to polish his English. (He already speaks very well!)  In the course of those lessons, Toya’s tales never cease to amaze his teacher—or how he can laugh about his adventures. 

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Photo at top, courtesy Unsplash!

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I WENT to take a training course for teachers in Pokhare Bagar. My friends and I walked seven hours down the mountain to get to the training center. It was raining heavily the whole time. I put on my sandals and I used a small umbrella.  The others with me were so surprised that I was wearing sandals.  They said, “The mud is deep. You should be wearing boots! How can you walk down the mountain in sandals?”  But I laughed and said, “It’s no problem!”  

We reached the training center after dark using our mobile phone flashlights. I stayed at a very small hotel with my friends.  There were many people who wanted to stay at this small hotel. The hotel did not have enough beds for everyone, so I had to share a very small bed with my friend. I did not move all night.  And I didn’t sleep all night.     

The training was running for four days. When the training finished, I had to go to Beni—the headquarters of the district. We were five people in my group.  It was difficult to get a van in Beni because it was almost dark.  But, at last, I saw a van coming. I went to the driver and asked the charge for the van. He replied that it would be 4000 rupees.  We bargained with each other and we agreed on 3500 rupees.  We quickly left Pokhare Bagar but, after three kilometres, we had to stop because a landslide had covered the road with mud.  After three hours a couple of my friends and I decided we had no choice but to walk over the landslide.  (We learned later from our friend who stayed with the bus that they had to wait all night. The road was not cleared until 10am the next morning.  Our friend then rode to his village. It took 9 hours to go 70 kilometers.) 

Our walk over the landslide was quite scary because it was dark and the ground was very slippery and difficult to walk on. If you slipped you would fall into the large river below us. We met a jeep after crossing that difficult place and asked the charge to go to Beni. The jeep driver said 5000 rupees. We discussed the price for awhile but I did not agree because the charge was almost double what it should have been.  So we started to walk.  It took us four hours to climb the mountain to Beni, confronting many challenges and difficulties because the road was so muddy and we always had to be mindful of the river below us.  It is the biggest river in Nepal and it was rushing very fast with all the rain.  We arrived at a hotel in Beni at 1 o’clock that night. We had dinner and then we went to bed.  We were happy because this time we each had a bed of our own.  I woke up at five the next morning because I should reach school on time to do my duties there. I hiked four hours up the mountain to get to Nangi. I was very happy because I made it on time.  —Toya 

 ©InterestEng. July 2013  §  The stories in the magazine portion of the site are written by English language learners. Stories are corrected by a native English speaker.  § Photos are staff or used with permission.  §  To contact us:  go.gently.on@gmail.com