Day 20 - Fri 4 Apr 08
Up at 06:00 to see if the mountain are in view, but they are covered in cloud so I head back to bed, but I can't sleep as I have to plan on how to get out of here and into India. All of the trains I want to use are wait listed, so there's no guarantee that we'll get to were we want to go. Eventually decide to stick with the original plan, and see if we can do something in Nepal on the way to the border.
Try to book the train into Varanasi, the website shows the train, and that there is space, but it just times out when I try to book it. Head downtown to see if we can get one of the many travel agents to do all the hard work for us. 650R does the job! So then it's a boat across the lake to the path up to the Peace Pagoda. The climb up is pretty tough and it doesn't help that we're doing this during the hottest part of the day!
The views from the top must be good on a clear day, but today the clouds cover them so have to be content with views of the lake. It's ironic that the Peace Pagoda is surrounded by a six foot high chain link fence with barbed wire at the top. The walk back down to the lake and boat is a lot easier.
Nipped into our travel agent to collect our Indian train tickets, and booked a taxi down to the border with an overnight stay at Bandipur. Got something to eat and some Internet before heading back to the hotel ahead of the usual 16:00 thunderstorm. On the way saw a Nepalese wedding including an elephant at the front.
Supper was at the Chinese restaurant but shock - no thunderstorm!