Asia | China | North West | Xiahe – Mutton curry
We gathered up just enough enthusiasm to walk into the dusty storm outside, and hiked up the slightly greener hills on the east side of town. The view wasn’t too spectacular, and a monk yelled at us and signaled us to get off the hill. I was confused why we weren’t allowed to sit under the tree, and the only reason I came up with was that he didn’t want us to step on the pine seedlings planted next to the trail in an effort to reforest.
We went to the monastery, and walked along the 10s of thousands of prayer wheels around the periphery. An old lady spoke to us with concern, and I finally realized that we were walking in the opposite direction as everyone else, and she was worried that we would undo all the good karma we could be building up by spinning the prayer wheels. So we turned around, saw some big brass Buddha statues in the halls, and chatted with a couple friendly monks and pilgrims until we felt had ‘done’ Xiahe.
The Nepali chef at the hotel’s restaurant cooked up his signature dish, the best curry mutton I had ever had. The chef came out to check with all the customers to see how well they liked their food. All the unbeatable service and unbeatable food cost a whopping $2. I wobbled back with pleasure and a full belly.