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  • Writer's pictureVoita

On a precipice

"You look tired." ..."kinda. I have to leave the country soon." "You like Ladakh?" ..."yes, I do. Very much."

different hostel. for comparison's sake.

Raybo is winning by miles

Perhaps once a month a shopkeeper matches an opening line so well to my mood that I respond. And yes, he was a muslim, inviting me for a tea and thanking for granting him the honour of hosting a guest in his shop. I swear no other religion takes hospitality this seriously. And no, he did not try to sell me anything at all.

ooh a new well, where may it lead? / my fav spot: a dog house!

except they were all in heat and pretty rowdy

My story:

The extension application got deleted and instead I've been suggested, based on my submitted desired (fake) date to leave India, to pay $90 overstay fine, presumably as an alternative to getting my visa extended. I may or may not be banned from re-entering India for the next five years if I choose to take it.

Alternatives:

  • my Pakistani visa comes through inside of 4 working days. This was the case last time, so all is not lost, but there's no guarantee it'll happen again. For this situation, I need to head over to Amritsar.

  • I fly over to Bangladesh, where visa on arrival will run me $20. For this situation, I need to buy flight directly from Leh to Dhaka, the capital, as that's by far the cheapest and fastest option to get there.

  • neither options works out and I touch down in Delhi, only to board a bus to Nepal, always happy to pocket more foreign money, with visa starting at $50 and nothing of interest left in the country for me.

getting ready

You ever played cards with the devil for your life?

I'll tell you a secret.

It's a low stakes game.

In fact, after money, the second cheapest pot.

But it's still a high adrenalin.

Next Monday and Tuesday, when I'll have to make a blind decision, my pulse will be worth checking.




Maqsood seemed to be doing ok. He'll be going back to Kashmir next month, to spend the winter there. His one complaint was towards his children, and how ungrateful they are to God, for what they have, what he worked so hard for to provide them with.



In the evening the Ladakhi harvest festival commenced with series of traditional dances and music. I only took pictures, filmed material gets stashed away for the travel-esque documentary slowly taking shape.

It's all kind of repetitive, like when you go to dozen churches around Europe. Slight differences, but unless you're avid fan, it soon starts to blend together.



My final ace:

Finally we're meant to hit the lofty peaks tomorrow. Last chance to clear my head and poke it above the clouds. Fingers crossed there are no clouds, as we intend to camp in 19.000 feet. hardcore.

We most likely won't have cell service until I return back to this official mess on Monday.

Until then, do me a favour and make every day count, because like my days in India, our time is a finite sum, quickly expiring.

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