After trekking in the Nepalese Himalayas, we took a bus down to Chitwan to spend a few days in the jungle among elephants, rhinos, and crocodiles. Chitwan's balmy humidity provided an excellent place to thaw after being constantly cold on the trek, and we found the same kindness and hospitality in Chitwan that we had experienced in Kathmandu and the mountains. Our dinners were included in our hotel package, so our Thanksgiving dinner was at the mercy of that night's set menu: Chinese-style chicken, french fries, pasta, rice, and veggies. This is not the product of a buffet....the plate actually came this way. This hotel served fantastic Nepalese food, but their "international" menu was hit or miss. I tried to explain Thanksgiving to some of the hotel staff, and they were unanimously baffled, especially by the fact that the holiday has no religious or political significance. They were also baffled by me: "Are you Nepalese, or Indian?" (Nisha is also a common Nepalese name). I probably seemed odd to them, with my Indian/Nepalese name and face, babbling in English about obscure American holidays.
Many travelers pass over Chitwan when visiting Nepal, drawn mainly by the gorgeous Himalayas, but I really appreciated Chitwan's invitation to set aside my hiking boots after a gruelingly gorgeous week of trekking. If you too seek such balance in your travels, I highly recommend a few days in this friendly national park as a part 2 to your Nepalese adventure.