Monday, April 16, 2012

Nature in Nepal-Flowers

Pine Forest just outside the Kathmandu Valley

I love nature here in Nepal. Even in the Kathmandu Valley there are incredibly beautiful places. There are even nice parks with flowers from all over the world. It's hard for someone like me to know which flowers are native to Nepal and which are exotics, so when I'm out enjoying nature I am always looking for familiar flowers and herbs. I even saw tulips in bloom last week and I'm pretty sure they aren't native to Asia.

Here is a field where many people work their own little patch of dirt. I see this view out my window. A few weeks ago the mustard greens were all in bloom and it was so colorful. The people grow various kinds of 'spinach,' cabbage, onion, cauliflower along with some unique edibles. One unique vegetable they grow here is radish, but not like back home. These radishes look like white carrots and they are very spicy. One day a Serpa friend invited me to a bowl of their traditional soup. It was primarily made with radishes and was so hot I couldn't even get a bite down. My friend admitted they had made the soup for themselves so it was a bit hotter than usual.

This little cluster of ground cover looked so familiar although I have no idea of the names. It just reminds me of how small this planet is and how there are really no borders. It's just one lovely home without any lines that divide. I guess that's what I like about seeing these flowers.

Rhododendrons are the national flower and they are very beautiful. I had never seen them growing on the trees before. There is so much wild life everywhere you look in Nepal. Yes, I know it's the same back home, but it just seems so manufactured back home and so natural here. This rhododendron tree was out in the wild. I doubt that anyone actually planted the tree. I imagine that a seed sprouted where the tree now stands.

 There is another plant that I see everywhere here that is seldom destroyed like back home. No, this plant may cause some irritation for the government because in order to get funding from my country I think they have to agree to use the money to destroy the plants, but it is a lost cause. I'm talking about ganja, marijuana, of course. It grows just about everywhere and because Shiva was a big ganja fan when he walked the earth as Shambhu people generally leave it alone. It isn't illegal on Shiva Rotri. You can take a look at my blog post for this celebration for more information. 
Nepal has the most varieties of birds on the planet. Nature is everywhere, familiar and unfamiliar alike. I hope to do a blog post about the birds because I am fascinated with the birds here. If you see no other bird in Nepal you should see the fabulous crows in Nepal. They are more beautiful than the crows in America and the Hindus in Nepal even have a special festival to celebrate the crow. However, it is seen as a harbinger of bad news during the rest of the year. 

Nepal, no matter how you look at it, is just beautiful. You do not have to go trek to Annapurna or Everest to enjoy Nepal's amazing beauty. It's just everywhere.

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