I am breaking my "no internet" rule in Darjeeling, a hilltop town in northern India, very close to Nepal and Bhutan. It's raining outside, so chilly that I am wearing a jacket (wow, it has been too long). The few days we have spent in this town have been languid and easy- and just perfect. We wake up, take a hot shower and dress, and then walk over to a small eatery for breakfast (usually for a masala dosa or momos paired with a steaming cup of milk coffee or tea). Then, we walk and walk, up and down the winding streets and often steep flights of stairs, through market stalls selling teas, Tibetan trinkets, cashmere shawls, and woolen sweaters. The town sits above the clouds in some parts, and in others, right smack in the middle. Mist hangs over the valley below, obscuring the tea plantations that flank this town.
On the crazy jeep ride up from Siliguri, three hours of switchbacks and speed, the climate grew increasingly cooler and the air smelled of mint. The valley shrank below us.