Monday, April 06, 2015

Ice Breaking - BBQ and Campfire in Sarangkot

Local Nepali chicken.

20th February 2015 (Friday) - Sherpa Guest House, Sarangkot


Who would have thought that we had a campfire in Sarangkot. Well, we did and it was awesomely memorable! It was the best night of our trip in Nepal. Here goes the story.

We realised that the weather was a challenge. The Annapurna mountain range can not be seen after 3.00pm. The clouds covered it completely. I was not clear who, but Mahfiz asked us if we would like to have a campfire that night. I jumped up and down by the mere suggestion. Then someone suggested a BBQ as well. Wowee! I love the idea.

Photo contribution by Hamidi, Mahfiz and Rahman
We planned to have our ice breaking session during the camfire. It got even better. Yes. We hadn't had our ice breaking session with our travelling members since arriving Kathmandu. In such a large group, we didn't really know everyone in person. We were split into smaller groups most of the time. Couples stick with their spouses, photographers always with their own clique, best friends with their own BFF like Awang and yours truly. Whomever travelling alone, will follow whomever they feel comfortable with. So, everyone welcomed the campfire idea.

It didn't come free of course, as it was not in the original itinerary. We agreed to chip in for the cost. First we need to find a live chicken and we found out that we had to buy the firewood as well. In Sarangkot, they are not allowed to cut down trees. So firewood is an expensive item to their household. The guest house owner managed to find two chickens and firewood supply for us. Total cost was about USD58 and our friend Hamidi paid for all of us. Thanks Hamidi!

Najmuni did the slaugtering. As a Muslim, we can only eat Halal food. It means foods that are in compliance with the Sharia Law (Islamic Law based on the Quran and the Sunnah). We can only eat meat that has been slaughtered the Islamic way. There are wisdoms behind why we slaughter the animals in such a way. You can read it all here. Not every Muslim man could do it. Being human, some are soft-hearted and probably some would faint at the sight of blood. However, every man has his own special skill and Najmuni had it in him for this task. Surprisingly Awang assisted him. Great! Matters about the chicken settled. I helped with the seasoning and again Awang, who's known for his cooking skill, handled the BBQ till it's all done. He did really well.

Introducing all the partners in crime in Nepal (Photos belong to all of them)

The ice breaking finally took place after the chicken was long cooked and eaten. The photographers were busy taking photos of the milky way, busy with their pro cameras and such. We were totally from a different interest group. The only common ground is travel. Awang and myself almost wanted to go to bed because it was very late but Mahfiz finally urged everyone to gather closer to the campfire to start the ice breaking at 12.00 midnight!

Yup, finally we got to know each other better. All 16 participants were asked to talk and share stories. We were of diverse age and occupation. However the spirit of wanderlust brought us together. It was adjourned at approximately 30 minutes passed 1 in the AM.  

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
Saint Augustine

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