Nepal is one of those extraordinary places where the verve of being there encourages your soul to sing. Express reader Bradley Stulberg spent a month trekking in the Himalayas and now shares the experience with you, just as prayer flags shared the energy of others with him…
“The sound of prayer flags flapping in the wind is one that I will never forget. Nearly all the high points, both literally and figuratively, of my recent Himalayan adventure were marked and connected by the thudding vibrations of these multi-coloured pennants.
Whether they greeted me at the tops of mountains following strenuous day treks or lined walkways to stuck-in-time villages and powerful monasteries, prayer flags always seemed to accompany my moments of physical and spiritual ascent. I only fully realised this toward the end of my journey, while crossing the highest travelled mountain pass in the world. And although altitude-induced dizziness makes thinking about anything at over 5400 metres (17,700 feet) a not-so-easy task, it was there that I found a special meaning in the sound that served as a constant background to so many of the memories I was making.
Prayer flags are raised as an offering, a chance for people to spread their blessings – via the wind – around the world. The prayer flags that painted my special moments were left by other individuals who had felt their own ethereal sensations in the same exact places where I was feeling mine. The fact that this sound was tied to experiences of awesomeness was no coincidence. Rather, it was the making of hundreds of years of mountain life and travel.
Reflecting on that thought, so far away from anyone in the middle of the Himalayas, I felt more of an energy and connection to all of humanity than I ever have before.”