quinta-feira, 14 de junho de 2012

Mcleod Ganj, the Dalai Lama, and a Comedy of Errors

I am with Anna and my friend Stephen and his Tibetan friend Tenzin in Mcleod Ganj, the seat of the Tibetan government in exile. It is a very spiritual place, but far from peaceful. Car horns honk here as if engaging in routine conversation with pedestrians. Monkeys clamor up tin roofs and smash them with wide palms, behaving like children who know causing a ruckus will help them get their way. Tibetan monks and nuns awake around 5AM and recite mantras around the city. In the evening tourists watch soccer matches and scream when their team makes a goal. Even a walk to the waterfall was filled with the noise of cars and motorbikes screeching by each other while old wise men play the sitar and watch the comedy of errors unfold.

Nun praying at Tsuglagkhang Complex, home of the Dalai Lama

Prayer flags on the kora, or ritual circuit, of the Complex.
One of the most ridiculous comedy of errors for Anna and myself has been the epic search for India-appropriate pants. We both assumed it would be relatively easy to find pants while here. It makes the most sense, since Indian clothes are made in consideration of the extreme heat. Also, we both kind of wanted to dress up as Indian princesses, perhaps myself a wee bit more than Anna. But the pursuit of Indian pants is just as difficult if not more so than the pursuit of pants in the United States. Besides my extreme pickiness, my body is just too bootilicious for Indian pants. I found a pair of straight-legged linen pants that I couldn't even yank over my thighs. TAt another shop owned by a Kashmiri man, Anna and I tried on pretty much his entire inventory. Surech (the phonetic spelling of this man's name) was very obliging and appropriately sarcastic as we tried on the "most boring" pants in the store. Some girls, they like fashion style, he explained straight-faced. Some girls, no. It's a problem. We quite obviously fell into the latter category. In my defense, he really wanted to sell me a pair of pants straight out of MC Hammer's closet that he called "funky." 

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