Kevin Swains
Travel Website
This is Kev's Travel Blog
 View from my guesthouse in Darchula (Nepal) on the rightacross the river to Dharchula (india) to the left. 
The border is open for Indians and Nepelese. It takes 12hrs to reach the nearest legal border crossing with Nepal
when on the Indian side but 3.5 days to cover the same distance on the Nepal side. Until I reached this area of Nepal I 
never thought of India as developed but India has an amazing network of mountain roads. My hotel in India is only 
380m away.
Picture taken in Nepal with India to the right hand side of the river. Good roads and power poles can
be seen on the Indian side while the Nepal side is totally undeveloped. Crossing the border illegally is simple
here with metal wires spanning the river for the locals to use. 
I love walking in the border areas just for the feeling of a change of culture, beliefs and wealth. 
The mountain regions of India are full of Nepalese in search of work. Mostly porteing work up the mountains for poor 
pay. That's how impoverish Nepal is. On 3 sides India and to the top China and land locked. What on earth chance have they got?

Chai shop en-route to Rapla. Tea is Rp5 (U$0.07) and 2min noodles are Rp20.
Biscuits are also sold. The locals are always friendly and honest as I expect them to be
having had almost zero contact with the white folk.
Village en-route to Rapla
My home for the night in the village of Rapla with the owner Bajit outside. Bajit is a social worker
in Kathmandu and also gets NGO help to improve village life. His last project was to supply safe
drinking water to the village from 4.5Km away. I am pleased to have met him. I offered for the food and
accomodation and all he asked is that I pass on the story of my time with the people of Rapla.
The previous night was just the same but with a local policeman who ran after me along the track.
It's open area but they like to keep a track of any foreigner who passes through. The last whities came through
6 month ago and no one the year before that. Again I got free food and accomodation and a heartfelt fairwell.
The local area head of police gets paid Rp10,000 per month (U$133). He asked what I get paid but how the hell can I tell him?
N29.46.832 E080.30.751
Guest house in the middle of nowhere. I was knackered when I arrived having walked for 2hrs through the
jungle in the dark and every time I stopped for a rest the leeches would pounce and I would have to pick them
off each time I started to walk again. As usual I was tired, hungry, no water, getting leech attacked and then
to make things better it started to piss it down. With no villages or moonlight I take whichever track looks or feels the best.
Arrived in the middle of Dasain festival, like our cristmas and as the village has a temple it was packed and I
became the centre of attention with 30 folk packing around me when I'm trying to eat some food.
Then I goto my room and 5 of them even follow me into the room. The room cost Rp30 (U$0.40)