"Wading neck deep in a swamp, your revolver is neither use nor ornament until you have had time to clean it" Mary H. Kingsley (1897)

Posts tagged “Tsomoriri


The Tsomoriri Wetlands provide a winter home to nomadic shepherds.
They spend the milder summer months in the mountain highlands.

We were invited to look into the tents and see their way of life.

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This “inspection” made me feel rather uncomfortable: I worried that they felt like mere exhibits.
But what they really thought I will, of course, never know.


The Water Carriers

Collecting meltwater from Tsomoriri.


High School

Tsomoriri has its own monastery and, like many of the Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, schoolboy monks attend daily classes.

Almost of the boys live in the monastery but the very youngest often return to their families at night.

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What I found more remarkable was that the “classroom” consisted of a terrace with a sheer, unprotected ten-foot drop to the rocks below.
If this had been London, the boys would have hurling themselves like lemmings to compound fractures or certain head injury.
Instead, the class sat chanting their lessons while their monk-teacher listened.
Then playfully giggled, as soon as they suspected he might be out of ear-shot.

They were remarkably happy and well-behaved and, as their teacher reassured me, there was no need to worry:
when it snowed the class was held indoors.


Home From Home, Of Sorts..

On arriving in Tsomoriri  the driver and his cook immediately set about trying to find us accommodation.
They returned to the car looking just a little glum, worried that we might not be happy with what was on offer.

It was certainly basic:
no beds; just a mattress upon the floor.
But our experienced carers had wisely brought sleeping-bags, and a gas-fired stove.
While, fortunately for me, the room did have a sofa, of sorts, to sit on.

My life has been relatively privileged so it is no bad thing to experience the simpler life.
And on occasion, I have slept in even more modest style.

Despite the limitations, our cook produced an amazing supper.

But as far as the bathroom facilities were concerned,
a discreet veil of silence might be in order..

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