The girls seemed better this morning as we left Khudi, although I was concerned with Ali who didn’t have much appetite. Lena seemed stronger. The first couple of hours were good, but the girls started losing energy after then, Ali in particular. Once we got past Bhulbhule I got the camera out and started doing some filming, the first I’ve done in Nepal. It was good to finally get back to doing this after two weeks. The challenge, however, was with Lena and Ali, particularly over the last leg, uphill to Bahundanda. This was particularly tough for Ali who was really struggling. Some food and rest seemed to do the trick, or so it seemed for a while!
Meanwhile I got talking to the owners of the Mountian View guest house, Bahundanda. They talked about past efforts at reafforestation, about 20 years ago, which have proved to be unsuccessful. The forest around their village was cleared as more people moved there. The problem now is that people are continuing to cut trees and burn the grass, with reafforestation efforts often negated with uncontrolled spread of fire. They have tried to talk to local people to stop cutting trees near the village, but to no effect. The other issue affecting them is the road that is being built to Manang, which will negatively impact on the environment and tourism. They would like support for a community development project in the area. Education is clearly the key.
Just when I thought things were coming right with Lena and Ali, Lena started going down again with diarrhoea. Our primary concern had been with Ali as it seemed Lena was OK, but this proved to be incorrect. Ali’s big need was for a good nights sleep. Lena was very distressed to be having diarrhoea again. It greatly distressed me as well to be seeing the girls so low.