This morning Jamie and Jen came by the guest house to tell me what they had found out about Tibet trips - very nice of them, I was just hoping they'd take the time to email me. I went out to talk to the Tibet company their going with. I wasn't all that impressed, and heard two slightly different stories from the two people I talked with there. I decided to hit a few random tour operators on my way back to my room - everyone has a different story (you can only stay in Tibet with the tour group / you can stay as long as you want / the visa takes a day / the visa takes a week / the embassy is closed until the 8th / 9th / 15th... etc.) I was a little frustrated so I decided to drop Tibet and look into what I want to do with the rest of my time in Nepal.
I stopped at a few travel agents to ask about flights to Lukla (near Everest) and to Bangkok. The flights to Bangkok are going to be more than twice as expensive as I thought - ouch! The flights to Lukla are a little more than I thought, but that's because the runway is being repaired so they have to bring you in nearby then helicopter the rest of the way - not really a bad thing. I found the Ultimate Descents office (recommended in Pokhara for a Tibet trip, and in my guide book for rafting) and talked to their Tibet guy - again, a slightly different story, but the company seems a lot more reliable. I also talked to their rafting people and decided to take a five day river kayaking clinic. Unfortunately when I came back to sign up for the clinic I found out it had been canceled - the rains had swollen the river so it was too rough. So I ended up signing up for a five day rafting trip on the Marsyangdi River leaving on the fifth. If I like the company then I'll sign up for their Tibet trip when I get back (I negotiated for a slight discount since I was booking two trips).
I was totally sick of the rain so I went back to my room to spend a few hours reading. I didn't get much reading done because of the fantastic lightning show - incredible bolts, and thunder that shook the window alarmingly. At around eight I decided to be social and go out and get a beer. I sat and read for a couple hours and was about to head home when a Scottish guy and two Kiwis joined me. The Scottish guy had been in Nepal for a month and was leaving tomorrow, the Kiwis had just arrived. Next thing I knew it had turned into a big night and it was after hours and we were talking our way into a closed bar. Finally staggered back to the hotel and my bed around two thirty.