It rained all night and through Saturday morning but once the skies cleared enough we decided to hike up to sarangkot, which is supposed to be an amazing viewpoint from which you can see the annapurnas (if the sky isn’t completely enveloped in clouds, which it has been here since we’ve arrived).
After walking along the lakeside road, we hopped over a stone wall and headed up the path, which was marked with red arrows. As we started up the steep climb, this dog started walking with us. While the stray dogs in Kathmandu and pokhara have been overwhelmingly kind and sweet and so so cute, we were a bit wary about this dog and whether he was rabid or territorial or prone to biting or anything. But as we walked, all our concerns were dispelled. Not only was he very friendly, but he knew the exact way up and down the path. He would sometimes hike between us, pausing to make sure I was still there, or he would run ahead, and then pause and look back at us until we caught up. He was a sweetheart and after we made it about halfway up it started to become clear that he was not only going to hike the whole way up with us, but that we’d both totally fallen for him. We decided that since he’d shown up out of nowhere like a miracle dog and was totally helping us find his way, we’d call him lasso (like lassie but he was a boy). We also may have briefly considered lassoing him and having him pull us up the never ending stairs to the top of the “hill” to sarangkot.
We were totally over the moon over lasso. When other dogs would growl at him, we’d wave a stick in their direction. When we felt he was going the wrong way (because of new construction), we’d call him back. when he couldn’t get on the rooftop porch we decided to eat at at the top of the climb, we moved downstairs so he could curl up and take a nap next to us. When we were offered a taxi on the way down, we made it contingent on lasso being able to come and when he wouldn’t get in the taxi, we decided to continue walking down instead. When he helped lead the way down, finding the path, we considered what it might take to adopt a Nepali dog. when we got to the bottom of the hike and he ran into the yard where it seemed he belonged, we shed an internal tear or two and tried not to look back.
And when we rated our favorite things so far about Nepal on our way down that hike, lasso made the top of the list.