Group Leader Rajesh Karki pays us a visit from Nepal
On Tuesday we were very privileged to welcome Rajesh Karki, one of our Nepalese Group Leaders to the office.
He has been visiting Britain and staying with some of our customers whose Everest Base Camp trek Rajesh led last year.
We had a chance to ask Rajesh some questions about Nepal and his job as a Group leader.
How long have you been working for the Adventure Company?
Since 2002, although I have been a Tour Leader since 1999. I am from the Everest Region although I came to Kathmandu to continue my studies. I was planning to join the army, but some of my cousins worked as tour guides and I was very curious to meet people from other countries. They encouraged me and I worked as an assistant guide and made my way up to be a tour leader.
My job has changed my life, I like getting to know different people and showing them the Nepalese culture and nature. It fills me with pride and love for my country.
I’ve led all the Nepal tours apart from Langtang and Lakes, but Everest Base Camp is my favourite as that’s where I’m from.
Have you been to the UK before?
This is my first time. I’ve just been to the Lake District which was lovely and to Alton Towers. That was the most adventure I’ve had in one day!
I’m also going to Snowdonia and Ben Nevis.
What’s your favourite place in Nepal?
The Upper Mustang Region. It’s very remote and close to the Tibetan border. It’s fascinating as the landscape is different to the rest of the country and the culture is very influenced by Tibet. When the Dalai Lama was in exile in India, Tibetans would travel down through Nepal to see him, but they found themselves stuck as the Chinese authorities wouldn’t let them return to Tibet and India wouldn’t let them stay. The Nepalese government allowed them to stay and lots live in Upper Mustang. They have very different ways, for example if a family has 5 sons, they all take it in turns to marry the same girl.
What dishes should people try when they go to Nepal?
Daal baat which is lentils and rice,
Tibetan bread, a type of flatbread usually made with cornflower
Momo’s, steamed dumplings (a bit like dim sum) filled with buffalo or yak meat in a spicy sauce. They also make vegetable ones. (the office got very excited at the mention of momos... mmm delicious!)
Nyak milk and cheese
Nepale tea, sweet spicy milky tea
Everest Beer, very nice after a hard days trekking!
Raksi, you might get a chance to drink this with the locals. It tastes a bit like tequila.
Chhang, home brewed beer usually made from millet.
Any advice for people when they travel to Nepal?
Don’t let people take your bags at the airport. They expect a big tip.
I found one customer had paid £40 for someone to carry his bag across the carpark!
Also if you would like to give something to the children you meet, it’s better to make a contribution to a charity rather than give gifts. We want to encourage children to go to school and not beg from tourists.