Tuesday, May 08, 2012

"What you think of me is none of my business." Photos from Bandipur.

"What you think of me is none of my business."
 ~ Terry Cole-Whitaker (and perhaps others)

Below, please to find photos from the beautiful village of Bandipur. This is a former trading post for India-Tibet trade, which explains some of the beautiful architecture and relative wealth. The road was only built in the last 10-ish years, so I hadn't even heard of it prior to this trip. Beautiful place - beautiful kids!


The main pedestrian-only road in town. I haven't even seen a single motorcycle on this lane, which is shocking. Motorcycles are normally accepted anywhere they can squeeze through.

This old woman hauls these bamboo poles all day long. She looks around 60 years old.

There's a great diversity of people here, but everyone is beautiful!

On a day off from school, this girl and her friends were wearing makeup.

Traditionally loads are carried like this. It's less needed now that there are more roads, but you still see people carrying heavy loads, even on flat ground.

The two beauties on the left are identical twins, Ganga and Jamuna, named after the holy rivers.

Going old-school on cutting reinforcing bar for construction.

This tall swing is a traditional Nepali feature in certain villages. Here a Buddhist nun is giving it a go. We spent a long time here, as it's just near a small Tibetan Buddhist temple that's being built.

I love this kid.

Hiking boots! We met a group of young Nepalis from Kathmandu who were here for the weekend. They didn't plan on hiking, which is why this poor thing was wearing these shoes on a two-hour hike. She wasn't happy.

We hiked to a large cave, which had no lights or path or safety equipment. It was pretty disorienting for me, especially when we first went in, since my eyes don't adjust to the dark very quickly.

We continued the walk from the cave down the hill to the highway and met many photolicious lovely people.


I love this photo.

Some guys were repairing the airhorn underneath a big truck. I stuck my camera under there and hoped for the best.

This 15 year-old might be the happiest mechanic I've ever met.

Who knows what the heck this is? They seemed to be retreading tires, but using a wood-fueled fire and some ancient metal contraption with a pressure gauge. I'm baffled.

Cage fighter!

A beautiful man a traditional Nepali hat. By the way, I didn't know when to use "Nepali" and "Nepalese" and discovered that there is no consensus on their use. Language, people, culture - either word is OK, apparently.

This is Kali, who I had to beg to come out for a photo. Mom rewarded her by offering her to us take to the U.S. Kali didn't like that idea! It's a common joke, but some tourists yesterday think it was offered seriously to them.

This girl is 15, and though she didn't want her photo at first, she sits with such composure. Beautiful.

This young woman is a laborer, with her hands covered in dust and nail polish hanging on in bits on one hand. She kind of gasped when she saw this photo - I'm hoping it's because she saw how beautiful she is.

More of on my favorite kids from the swing.

This is during a procession of Buddha's birthday, from the Buddhist temple through town. Most people are Hindu here, but they have a lot of tolerance for each other's views here.

This serious kid is only five or six. What a stunner!

Young lovelies in front of the Buddhist temple.

At the end of the ceremony for the Buddha's birthday, there's the traditional tsampa war. Tsampa is roasted barley flour.

Sonam, one of the head monks, was well into this part!

Get 'em, Sonam!

I'm running out of ways of describing how kids are cute. Cute-a-licious! Cute-a-lectable!

The swing, at its full potential.

All the kids are cute, but not equally so! I love this one especially. The girls were rehearsing for a dance performance.

Dance rehearsal.

Carom on the street, just in front of our hotel.

Just down the hill from here - 20 years ago, on my first trip in Nepal. We had to sit on the roof of the bus for most of the nine hours dirt-road trip - the same one that takes four hours now. Now that I no longer look like this, people are happy to tell me that I USED to be attractive. (Thanks, Jen - love ya babe!) I don't remember anyone telling me that then!
(The End)