Saturday, 11 November 2017
Today we're driving from Kathmandu to the hill town of Nagarkot -- a 32 km (20 mi) drive that takes over 2 hours (not counting stops in Pashupatinath and Bhaktapur).
Our first stop was the nearby Pashupatinath temple complex. Non-Hindus are not allowed in the main temple, but are allowed on the grounds. There is plenty to see. Saturday is the national day off in Nepal (Sunday is a regular work and school day), so the area was quite crowded.
|Western sensibilities might be surprised (or alarmed) by seeing the swastika and 6-pointed star ("Star of David") side-by-side, but both are important symbols of good fortune in Hinduism.|
|The streets entering the complex sell all sorts of religious essentials and souvenirs.|
|Independent priests sell their services on the side of the road.|
|On the other bank of the river are more ghats (not used for cremations) and a series of Shiva shrines.|
|Looking down the line of Shiva shrines.|
|More temples/shrines -- mostly to Shiva.|
|The east side of the river also has a number of stone platforms for performing religious rituals.|
|A priest reads the newspaper while waiting.|
|A ceremony in progress.|
|At the end of the ghats, unburned wood is recovered for use in another cremation.|