"Internet Day"

Today is "internet day." I have my internet to-do list, which is everything that requires WiFi, Bluetooth, streaming, connecting, banking, downloading, soundclouding, spotifying, emailing, syncing, shazaming, whatevering. #Blogging?

(It's been almost two weeks since I've had solid internet, so... over the course of the past two weeks, I did write a post which ended up being very, very long... I finished it about a week ago, but never got to post it because Internet is not a thing here.  If you have 15 minutes and you want to travel back in time one week with me, here it is :) )

So. Some tiny 'stories' from the road.

1. India is unearthly.  It has gotten inside my soul in a way that no other place ever really has.  I appreciate the things India makes me think about and care about.  I like sitting on the floor everywhere we go.  I like being enveloped by mountains and rivers and the nicest locals I've ever met (with the exception of Adithep Chaisiri and Amann Tanhemnayu in Phuket <3).  I have adopted the priorities of India.  More on this in future.

2. I have now been to Delhi, Rishikesh and Dharamsala and I'm currently in Manali.  The music in Manali is bangin.  Manali is an edgy little town tucked in the mountains.  The scenery is too good to be true.  Yesterday we hiked to a pretty big river.  I feel so healthy spending my time walking or hiking for hours and earning such stunning views.  In India, I hike to waterfalls and rivers almost daily.  Here's one in Dharamsala:

3. In Dharamsala, Mike, Cauê and I spent almost three hours in Mitthu's shop, while she told us story after story about her family's Tibetan Buddhist artwork.  We all bought pieces.  Some of the detailing is so fine it is done with just one horse hair.  These pieces can take up to three and a half months to make, with three people working on them at the same time! (Hi Mike.)

Me and Mitthu in her shop:

4. When you pass a PARTY sign on a rock in the woods, you follow it...
5. I am not what I have.  I am what I have to offer to others.
6. Even the street in Dharamsala was beautiful.
7. A goat waits patiently among the locals at the ATM machine while the monsoon crashes down. Mike and I eventually take our shoes off and forge this mini river -- the second time I have taken my shoes off and forged the monsoon barefoot in India.

8. Talk about lessons in budgeting.  All I can think about is how to travel for longer.  I reconciled my budget last night after a couple of weeks... this is possible.  Uh oh ;)

9. The bus rides continue to be insane. They are a necessary challenge while traveling throughout India.

10. My favorite thing so far has been the conversation.  Hashtag #cheese hashtag #convos hashtag #philosophy... there are so many people to learn from.  What an incredible luxury to have the time to converse.

11. I'm hanging at Sunshine Cafe in Old Manali.  Earlier today I passed a shop on the street selling flannel fabrics.  The tailor inside custom makes flannel shirts.  He's sitting at his sewing machine right there.  He's making a guitar case for someone else.  Well I suppose I am a bit chilly, no!?  So I chose a fabric, got measured, watched him cut the fabric in to an Allie-sized shirt shape in front my eyes.  Going to pick it up shortly...

12. I am trying to wrangle a group to go on a 9 day trek with me from Manali to Spiti Valley.  Many are doing slightly shorter treks here but there is a 90% chance we can make a crew happen over the next couple of days.  Should I hand out flyers at the cafes?  For real, though. 

13. At the end of August I'll have to leave India temporarily to renew my Visa. I'll probably do this in Nepal and then come back to India. Can't. effing. get. enough.
...big love from Manali.