Flavorless Nepali Food

In less than a week, I head with my brother-in-law on an epic adventure of hiking from Kathmandu to Everest Base Camp.

It's a long, cold hike at a crazy altitude. No alpining, just hauling ourselves, but it's going to be taxing under the best of circumstances.

So, I figured it would be a good idea to put on my pack and hike a few miles several times before we go. I started with a 5 miler, which felt mostly fine, except for some mild old-man pains (hip and joint). But the next morning I woke up more sore than I anticipated. I was worried that the trip was going to be harder than I thought, but the soreness got worse as the day progressed...not better.

By the end of the day I also had a headache going, and more than just my knees and hips were sore. I left work early and spent the rest of day lying down.

The 2nd day started with a solid headache and a fever that ran all day and over night. I didn't bother trying to work (my boss was very understanding) and spent most of the day asleep.

By the next morning the fever had let up (I wouldn't say "broke", since I can usually definitively tell when my fevers are over. This one just sort of eased up, but I wasn't sure if I was out of the woods or not). The headache was still there, and I noticed that I had become very sensitive to any salt in my food. The day passed with me just feeling generally crummy, and having a hard time focusing on anything. Lots of time spent watching videos.

In the days since, each morning has me feeling a little better. With the headache lessened, the ability to focus a bit better, and the general grossness/malaise reduced.

One thing that has increased, though, is that instead of just a salt sensitivity, my taste has completely abandoned me. We have all felt lousy, so Jena had some food delivered and whatever faults fast food has, blandness usually isn't one of them, but I couldn't taste anything. The spicy chicken wings, the mashed potatoes...even the recovery ice cream we had after had no flavor at all. It was texture and occasional saltiness.

At that point we pulled out the covid tests and, sure enough, everyone in the house has it.

Fortunately, since we're all vaxxed and boosted, we're all on the road to recovery already. But I am concerned about the sense of taste.

Indian food has long been my favorite ethnic food choice, and similar variations are always intriguing. Every time I've had Pakistani or Nepali food I've loved it. That whole region really knows how to cook.

And now I'm going to that region. And we'll be there during festivals, which I can only imagine means amazing food on every corner.

And I can't taste anything.

If I can't taste by the time I get to Kathmandu, it's going to cast a dark shadow on this whole adventure, and I really, really, hope that's not what happens.