An account from Jolana

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This time in Aandhimul and Bandipur, with no wrapped presents and no families or decorated Christmas tree, but amazingly great people, chips, pancakes, hot bucket of water as a shower and bottles of wine!!!

The morning was cold and the night in the village was for some disturbed by mouse, or a light in order to scare the mouse. That did not work and for me it was one sleepless night. When asked if we felt comfortable as the mother and her daughter laid down on a rugs of clothes to keep a bit warm, we had to answer yes politely as our luxury was a bed with no mattress. There were no comfortable beds but the comfort was found in the people, the way they interacted with us, cracking jokes and offering the best food they could come up with.

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I do remember a weak point for me when I was left in Abu Khaireni alone, with everyone around me being ill, the coldness and the damp air and I wished to be in another place. The impermanence of things soon changed that with a new day, new layers of clothes to keep warm. I remember that all of this is keeping me awake and when I saw the top peaks wearing red under the evening sun I could not grasp a breath. The pettiness of my wining went and something more greatful replaced it. It was hard to talk. Walking up to the Bandipur was an exhilarating experience, waking up to the sun, to the mountains to the possibilities of not eating rice and get spoiled by comforts a tourist place offers, and yes messages, messages from home from loved ones saying Šťastné Vánoce….or Merry Christmas – unwrapped presents these were.

Jolana

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