Life in the Ghats (1)

My guest house is quite well hidden. It’s off the main road that runs parallel to the river (the goddess Ganga), behind Tulsi Ghat, down the ally by the sign for Indian music school, then left after the music school’s logo. The image they use is quite conventional—some kind of stringed instrument, a sitar perhaps?—but at first glance I thought it was a fertility symbol, like those suspended from some Bhutanese houses. A second look persuaded me it couldn’t be, primarily because even the most radical variations in human physionomy don’t usually include pegs for tightening strings…

The man in the picture below has a patch near the corner of my alley.

This is the man whose patch is on the opposite side of the street from the man doing the ironing. He sells electrical goods and sensibly sticks to the lower end of the market.

I met this little beauty this morning on my way back from a stroll along the Ganga.

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5 thoughts on “Life in the Ghats (1)

  1. I admire so much how your photographs make Varanasi seem almist empty. Someday, if you havent already, read Geoff Dyer’s Jeff in Venice death in Varanasi…

    1. Thank you. And sometimes it is empty, especially in the mornings and at twilight. Of course, it’s never buffalo shit-free, there’s always someone who wants to rent you a boat or a beautiful child who wants money… And Noa lent me Geoff Dyer’s book, but thanks again for the tip.

  2. Funny to come across your ‘quality’ blog. I was searching the web for some thangka images for an empowerment ‘give-a-away’. I’ve been a student of Sogyal Rinpoche for many years, we’ve probably sat together in a few teachings in Lerab Ling or elsewhere. You’d probably know my face or say, “yes, I’ve seen you, you look familiar”. Perhaps not, funny to look through your blogs and see a young Patrick, a photo of a Lama in a place unknown, the places a student goes when their not on retreat! When they’re just living, doing what they do. While I read your blog I’m reminded of SR, “some of you (students) will be very involved or important to the dharma in the future”…and then you say to yourself…” yeh, right, sure” and then you find a blog, and read it and see, as we so often do, how the Lama is light years ahead…God bless my friend… Pearse.

  3. Love your photos, too! They are so artistic but real. The color, the light and the composition make those present moments vivid. Reading your blog is really joyful and inspiring.

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