Travel Notes from Kathmandu City Hotel, Thamel, Kathmandu, Nepal

12:56:00 AM Jerik De Guzman 0 Comments


I have already left Kathmandu but every single day, i always think about the people i have met, especially at Kathmandu City Hotel. I think it's God's work that i stayed at this hotel after discovering my previous hotel has been fully booked. I could walked to another hotel, a few meters away, and stayed there --one that is cheaper. But i chose this hotel because the minute i stepped inside, i knew i would stay here for a very long time. Little did i know, i would realize that this was one of the best decisions of my life.

Just today, i stepped inside a room, and gave the man my speech. I am very lucky with the opportunity that i have with me right now. One that i can never ever pass. I just spent the whole day maneuvering my life to another direction. One direction that i know will do me good, and the people I've met. I am the captain of my own ship. As i navigate my destiny, i knew that this was the path i wanted to take. 

I could have gone on another day trip outside Kathmandu, yet i stayed. I spent the last two days of my stay in Nepal at this hotel. I was transferred to the same corner room, although one floor down. It has the same feel, bit of luxury, located right in the heart of Thamel. The people manning the place are all professionals. In five years, i bet Kathmandu City Hotel will grow to become the number 1 hotel in Thamel. I didn't get paid for this. Heck, i never get paid writing stories here in this blog because i never allow it. This blog is the only property i have that's never measured by any number. Up until now, my mind hasn't changed.

The man on the left of the photo above is Lamsal. He is one of the most intelligent Nepali man I've ever met. After days of observing him, i realize how fast he thinks, solves guests' unruly problems, and gives suggestions. His shift is in the morning, the perfect person i always ask whenever i find myself lost between doing nothing for the day or going out to nowhere. He would offer me Masala tea all the time as he knows how big of a fan i am of the Nepali tea. I never paid for all those cups, mind you. I don't know if he's ever met anybody like me, who prefers doing absolutely nothing. The man on the right is Shiva. A father of two, a doting husband, who takes the night shift. After coming from a long day walking around, he's there as my sounding board for my unfathomable love for this country. He never fails to answer me from the dumbest to the most technical questions i have about the country. During my last few days in Thamel, i would spend evenings with him talking about religion, having a Nepali wife, power cut-offs and even vegetables. I would order Dahl Bat and eat with him, because after spending most of my two months eating alone in Nepal, a local friend would be awesome.

Today, i think about these people. And the brother of Shiva's wife will stick to my head for the rest of my life. Once you know his life story, you would appreciate life on a whole different perspective. You would think twice before spending something you don't need. You would think twice before honking your car because of traffic. He's ten years younger than me, but his story could very well fit a war veteran. He is one of the strongest man i know. And whenever i talk to him, i could see in his eyes the passion and struggle to become somebody in the future. You don't see that a lot in here.

You see, my mornings and evenings were all spent in this hotel. Not to enjoy the room but to enjoy the company of all the people working here. It sounds cliche that people here are nice because 99% of the Nepali you will meet on the road are all nice, too. But these people made a lasting impression on me because they treated me very nicely. It felt like i didn't stay at a hotel. It felt like i was actually living with them.

Every day, i would wake up late. I will eat my breakfast at the roof top terrace and i will always order the biggest plate of first meal in the world. I would sit for a while as i smoke my Surya, and chat with the young waiters. We would talk for a few hours before i go back to my room and shower. Then, i would go down to Lamsal and ask him where i can go. He always fixes my itinerary. After spending a ridiculous amount of time planning, i would then head out and change my plans again. I would come back late in the evening and say hello to Shiva. I would sit in the couch and talk about where i went that day. He would offer me Dahl Bat and we would eat up stairs while getting to know Nepal a bit more. I would relax for a bit in my room before coming down to watch TV with the rest of the crew. At first sight, people may think my days were boring. But i feel, i have finally settled and these moments are truly memorable.

This story is suppose to be a review of Kathmandu City Hotel but right at this very moment, as i type this, all i could think about are their kindness. All i could ever think about are the moments we've all shared in this home. 

In the remaining days of my stay in Nepal, talking to these people capped off my learnings of Nepal. And i could go on and on, but definitely, the prize possession of this country is really the people. I've never stayed in any country this long. There's only one reason for that. I love Nepal with all my heart.

I walked into the room today, with the brightest answers to every question. I walked and talked about my life, my career, my goals and aspirations. I've talked about the people I've met and my undying love for travel. I've talked about how i see my future. I wanted to do good today because i believe this is the direction destiny has brought me. I am doing this not only for myself but for the people i have met at Kathmandu City Hotel. These people served as my inspiration to do good because i know they are looking forward to hearing good news from me. And in return, i give them the greatest gift in the world --a glimmer of hope that they too can succeed.

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