Down and Out in Kathmandu
Overworked computer programmer Zelda Richardson is teetering on the edge of burnout.
Inspired by a girlfriend’s trip around the world, she leaves her life in Seattle, Washington, buys a backpack and flies to Kathmandu as a volunteer English teacher – determined to make a difference and find herself whilst doing it.
She can’t wait to immerse herself in Nepalese life but is overwhelmed and alienated by its foreignness. Despite the power outages, lack of running water and difficulty in learning the language, she sticks it out, wanting to prove – mainly to herself – she can survive without the luxuries of home.
One distraction is the charming Ian, the sexy Australian backpacker whom she gets to know on arriving in Nepal. When her students laugh her out of the classroom and the headmaster publically humiliates her, Zelda flees to the tourist district of Thamel to drown her sorrows with Ian.
What follows is every traveler’s nightmare as they find themselves entangled with an international gang of smugglers who believe Ian and Zelda have stolen their diamonds.
Can Zelda find a way to get the smugglers off their backs and her Nepalese students to respect her, before her time in Kathmandu is over?