Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008 - Welcome 2009

Christmas is just as good as over for us here and new year is rolling on its way. If there was not much of a christmas, I cant expect much of a new year too. But looks like there will be a welcoming of the new year tonight at the library. Parties and more parties!

Over the weekend, lessons took a backseat as we joined in the celebration of the Ladakhi New Year and we had 2 days off. On Sunday there was a puja at Jangchubling at 6.30am followed by a tea party at 10.30am. There was much gaity with singing and dances of sorts. On Monday there was another tea party at the Shedra. As with their custom, which is quite similar to that of chinese new year, we visited Khenpo Rangdrol's residence. Ladakhi cookies, tibetan fares and tea were served.

As I spend my christmas and the new year in this foreign land (which is also home to me), I think of my family and friends back home and wish them a new beginning with everything to their highest good.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Isn't Christmas Here

While everyone is preparing for christmas there isn't going to be much christmas over here. Being in a buddhist community some westerners even look at it as inappropriate to celebrate christmas. To me Christmas is a joyous occcasion of giving and loving and should be seamless, so to speak.

To all my friends out there, a Merry Christmas and a Very Fruitful New Year.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Home Away From Home

Going online here is a real test of patience. I was at the Library for a good half hour and nothing happened. To write a blog entry with photographs is out of the question. I have taken some pictures of the place where I am staying now and most likely my friends will think that I am in some parts of Europe because the Library here is more like a 5-star resort. The pictures will have to wait.

Winter is really setting in now with less sunshine, shorter days, strong winds and occasional rain. I love it all the same. To me here, it is a home away from home as I have already set up home with the purchase of a hot plate, pots and pans, plates and bowls and most importantly we have found a store that sells Lee Kum Kee oysters sauce (RM15), St Dalfour jam (RM16), Kikoman light soy sauce (RM15) .... yes, prices are hefty but I am not complaining.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Little Heart Wrencher

Mummy, what is the country code for India ............... I cant get through

There is no tone ....... did you give me the correct number???????

Ah .... now I got it. Hello hello hello ................

It's warm to know (on a cold winter's day) that someone is trying real hard out there to get in touch with you just to say "hoh hoh" (hello hello) with his little toy phone. Seeing this brings me closer to home.

Tomorrow is a tibetan holiday (not an Indian holiday) and it will be another day of lazing around. Had thoughts about making a run to Rishikesh but with some security alerts, it's wiser to stay put. In any case it is just a one day holiday and it will be kind of rush to make any plans out of Dehra Dun

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Walk Thru The Wilderness

Taking a break to reconnect with nature - a shortcut thru the forest to Jangchub Ling Monastery.
Weather is getting cold and by 5.00pm it suddenly turns totally dark. Have been going to bed as early as 7.45pm at times and waking up around 5.00am to hear the sound of gongs from a nearby Tibetan college (Chetsang Holiness' Drikung Kagyu College).