Category Archives: Nepal

Change your thoughts, change your life

2015 11 Monk Thailand
Monk saying his prayers at a Temple in Nepal

I had a really challenging day this week…you know one of those days where everything seems to be going wrong or going against you. At one point I just wanted to sit and cry.

I decided that rather than let the tears fall I was going to remove myself from everything and have a little walk. It turned out to be the best thing I could have done. I realised I was letting myself be pulled into other people’s dramas. It’s not my job to make other people happy, I can only make me happy. So I decided to change the way I was thinking and something magical happened….

I got a lovely message from my boyfriend telling me he loved me.

A colleague at work put some money in for the Christmas Party on my behalf and told me to pay her back next week.

A friend asked me if I was ok because she could see I was upset and wanted to know how she could help.

A huge thunderstorm and heavy rain started (it is the wet season in Darwin) and a work colleague offered me a lift home.

My dad called me to ask how I was and we talked for ages.

All these lovely positive things helped to restore me and make me smile from the inside out.

I challenge you, when you feel like the world is caving in around you, to start to look for one good thing…many more will start to appear after that.

Have a fabulous week!


Cheeky monkey’s

Eating banana's in the temple in Nepal
Eating banana’s in the temple in Nepal

Whilst travelling through Thailand and Nepal one of the things which captivated me and made me nervous at the same time was the Monkey’s.

2015 11 Cheeky monkey Thailand
Stealing food from the boat in Thailand!

They were everywhere!!!! And they were so cheeky! From chasing me and my friends off a beach on an Island so they could steal our food, to jumping in the canoes as we were paddling past and stealing fruit at the local temples. These highly intelligent creatures knew exactly how to manipulate, either through fear (they have seriously sharp claws) or through being immensely cute, they had everyone captivated.

Pulling the cute look
Pulling the cute look

Taking food from the locals

Achieving your goals, Bertie style

Bertie at Base Camp

Some people choose to wish on a star and see what happens, others choose to plan and organise a method to move towards their wishes and goals. Some wishes can not be planned, but with daily steps, consistent motivation even when you don’t feel like it, they can be achieved.

Like an athlete preparing for a race, putting energy every day into pushing themselves further and further through their own personal limits and setting new goals on a daily basis. A wish or a dream can be achieved in the same way.

First you have to make the decision to start.

Then you have to follow through on your decision.

Every day devoting time to achieving your goals. Every day setting aside time to work on your dreams, even if you are tired, feel that you can not fit it in, or want to do something more “fun”. Someone who has achieved a dream or a goal is someone who has maintained consistent focus on what they want and actively worked towards it everyday.

You may find that your wish or dream begins to change and transform before your eyes and moulds itself into something even more amazing that you could have first imagined.

This is how Bertie completed his trek.

Every day, focusing on what needed to be done bit by bit. Taking small steps towards meeting his goals and his dream. Bertie realised that he had kept the bigger picture of reaching Base Camp in his mind, but in the background and took the small steps to reach his goals and choose to focus on each section he was to complete, before he knew it he would be where he wanted to be.

There were times when Bertie wanted to give up, to sit down and return to a lower altitude, and there will be times when you are on your way to your dream that you will wonder what you are doing and why you are doing it. You will have days where you feel tired, but the difference between someone who has achieved their goal and someone who has not is that one person pushed onwards through all odds. Just like Bertie. He pushed through the negative self doubts and self talk and tried to maintain focus on the final outcome of the whole journey and how he would feel when he had achieved that.

He could not believe it when he actually got there!

What goals could you start working towards today? What small steps do you need to start making on a daily basis to achieve what you want to achieve? How will you feel when you finally get there?

Dreams, wishes and prayer

Bertie at Base Camp

The thing which Bertie noticed the most against the backdrop of panoramic mountains and snow were that the Nepalise people hung coloured prayer flags so that the wind would capture their dreams, wishes and prayers.

Bertie discovered that the flags were originally hung as talismans to protect Tibetans during times of war. These have now developed to have messages of hope and peace written on each flag. The flags have five colours. Each colour symbolising five elements, white stands for air, space and the vastness of the sky, blue stands for the ether or the wind element, green and yellow symbolise water and earth and the red flag represents fire. The prayer flags also represent the five meditation Buddhas and the five wisdoms; compassion, harmony, wisdom of sight, kindness and perfect wisdom.

Everyone has dreams, wishes and hopes and as Bertie watched the flags dance rhythmically on the gentle breeze he hoped that the wishes and prayers of the people who had left them there had been answered. As Bertie continued to learn more about the prayer flags and why they were hung he learnt that above all they symbolise peace and harmony with our friends and family, and with the greater universe.

What a lovely way for the world to think. Bertie hoped that one day everyone is the world would work together for the goodness of everyone and everything. He was beginning to realise and understand that we really are all connected to everything and everyone around us. We just have to stay still long enough to notice!


Waking the sleeping giant

Mountains and prayer fags

Up until now Bertie had been enjoying a relaxing ride through Thailand. Now he was in Nepal the hard work was going to begin.

Bertie started his trek fresh with enthusiasm and excitement about what was to come. He was quite pleased to be leaving the hustle and bustle of Kathamndu behind for the calmer tranquility of the mountains.

The first part of the trek started well. Driven by his excitement Bertie enjoyed the walks through the Hill tribe communities and mountain ranges. The more he watched and observed his surroundings, the more Bertie began to realise that people were not so different from each other, they just failed to notice it on many occasions.

People seem to have had many different journeys to get to the same places. Some had more trails and tribulations than others and everyone had their own story to tell and had their own reason for being in the mountains and for completing this trek.

Bertie was beginning to realise that if you go beyond the ego and the materialistic wants and needs that most people focus on, you begin to realise that everything on this planet has the same daily needs. Everything is inter-connected.

Stripping back the luxuries of life and going back to basic living reminded Bertie where he had come from. He had been a bear with nothing, no family, no belongings and no hope. How different this journey had made him feel. He had felt liberated and felt a deep understanding of the people and animals whom he had come into contact with on this journey so far. Those that were from similar backgrounds to himself but they were still worlds apart in where they lived.

It began to dawn on Bertie that he was actually homeless. He still had no where he truly called home and he had very limited belongings but the difference is that he was beginning to feel truly happy. His situation had not changed at all, so what had?

Bertie was beginning to realise that it was his outlook on life that was beginning to change. His views, ideas, beliefs and opinions were being challenged and tested on a daily basis and as long as he maintained an open mind to these challenges he was beginning to grow and learn within himself. That was the source of the happy feeling. It was a deep internal feeling that he had never felt before. It felt like this is what he had been searching for but had not realised it and didn’t even know that by letting go of everything he could achieve it. He had spent so much of his life looking to belong, to fit in and find where he could be safe that he had missed the alternative of letting go completely and seeing where life was taking him.


Bertie’s top tips for arriving in Nepal

Bertie arrives in Nepal

Bertie’s top tips for arriving in Nepal:

1. Try to obtain your visa online before you arrive. The visa queues on arrival are very long and can take 1 – 2 hours to get through.

2. Nepali SIM cards are readily available throughout Kathmandu. Look for the NCELL sign outside shops. Be aware though that you need to provide a good photocopy of your passport, fill in a detailed form and also provide your finger prints in order to obtain a SIM! At the time of travel (March 2014) a NCELL basic sim cost 350 NR

3. People in Nepal speak very good English!!!

4. Ensure that you have some US dollars or GBP on you so you can easily change these to Nepalese Rupees. Both USD and GBP can be taken from cash machines situated inside Bangkok’s airport. Alternatively, there are several exchange bureau’s in Thamel, Kathmandu.

5. Bertie could not find anywhere in Bangkok which would exchange Thai Baht for Nepalese Rupees.

6. Credit cards are accepted in the main areas of Kathmandu. However, there can be a charge for using your card, ranging from $1 to 2% of the bill.

7. Electricity in Nepal is sporadic and can go down at any time. Of an evening the electricity can be turned off meaning there are no street lights. Therefore, it is best to carry a small torch and to not go out in the evening alone.

8. Wifi and internet access is available in most hotels and is usually free.