Odds and Ends

Right now the weather in Bir is a regular topic of conversation. The monsoon has yet to end, but the temperature is cooling. Rinpoche says we’ve lost autumn altogether. And he may be right.

One of the things about all this rain is that it seems to encourage worms to wriggle out of their nice, safe holes under the earth, and recklessly throw themselves onto hot paving stones where they bake. Literally. Poor, stupid creatures. And because Tara always used to spend hours and hours scooping them up and depositing them in the shade before they were too well done, I feel guilty if I don’t make the effort to save at least one worm a day. But the truth is that Tara’s rescues were made out of genuine compassion, mine out of guilt. Ach ja, what it is to be English.

The spiders are beginning to mass. I’ve only seen one of the truly gargantuan kind so far, and was able to chase it out of the bathroom with a water scraper. But the small jumpers are all over the place, while a middle sized one has taken up residence in the sink and risks drowning every time I try to clean my teeth. It simply will not go away. But then again why should it? The sink is its home, even though to my eyes it’s the last place on earth any being would want to live.

I’ve also noticed that mobile phones are taking over, and not just amongst the young or frantic business people. Take, for example, the other night. Emily had a new app for combining photos of faces, so she and Claudia’s girls spent the entire evening taking photos and creating monsters. It was fun, I must admit, but I noticed that all I ever see of people these days is downcast eyes and tops of heads.

Following on from yesterday evening’s “Hard At It” post, here’s a picture I took of Elise when we were ‘working’, as well as yesterday’s sunset. It’s slightly humiliating, in some ways, to have fallen foul of the inji infatuation with Bir’s sunsets (the Tibetans and Bhutanese laugh at the amount of snaps we all take of the sun; they don’t see the point) but I just couldn’t resist. Not only was it beautiful, but I took the picture from the door to the room I stay in, so it’s ‘my’ view of the sun. (Little things…) I promise it’ll be the only one I post. This visit, anyway.

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