Kathmandu
First of the new Danger Dogs

Busy day in Kathmandu

My official morning started with a meeting with my artist Sanjib Rana in the Dragon Guest House gardens.

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I was glad to find Sanjib, as his mobile kept saying 'not accepting incoming calls'.   Sanjib paints his signboards on a larger format than my other artists, approximately 12" x 15" instead of the standard 1 square foot.   He will be working on his painting while taking his mother to the hospital 3 times a week for dialysis.  His daughter is 12 and studying hard.   He mentioned that he had never left Nepal, and I asked where he got his fluent English, since I have always assumed that he learned in India, since he is so proficient.   He replied that he picked up most of it from foreign friends.  I gave him a poster of Australian parrots to add to his collection of pictures of birds and horses - his specialtes.

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After a quick pass of the Stupa, I noticed that Buddha Boy would be at the Boudhanath Stupa today.   Posters and fliers announcing his visit (in Nepali and Tibetan script) were everywhere.

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Next, after a long ride (packed like a sardine) on  local microbus into Kathmandu proper (Jyatha, to be precise), I ordered the last of my signs with Nara, formerly known as Asha.   Mr. NB Maharjan (above) took my order.  

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Right around the corner, on my way into Thamel - the tourist district - I came across this Hindu procession, consisting of 4 palanquins each held by 4 men.   Passersby would bow and touch the colorful shrine as they passed much like a Catholic might give the sign of the cross while passing something holy. 

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My favorite part of the display is the radishes placed decoratively about the altar. 101_6273
The chaos that is Kathmandu.

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Next I stopped off at the Lotus Gallery to see my old friend Santosh.   Lotus is alone in  promoting contemporary Tibetan Art here in Kathmandu.    101_6278

Many famous artists such as Tenzing Norbu Lama - featured in the Oscar-nominated film 'Himalaya' (aka 'Caravan') are represented by the Lotus Gallery.   I was happy to have met Tenzing at my last stop at Lotus in August.

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But Jim Aplington, who has run the gallery for 12 years, has a wide variety of artists on the walls.

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Besides these modern works, Jim's also a good source of traditional Thankas. 

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You can find out more about the Lotus Gallery and it's artists at LotusGalleryNepal.com

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Or you can stop by.   It is near the heart of Thamel across from the Delices de France restaurant, on the main road down from the Kathmandu Guest House.

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Then it was off to the Kathmandu Guest House to check on my friend Susan Sakya and her fabulous shop Susan's Collection.   Susan is blessed with a depth of knowledge and the good taste to go with it.

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Look at those chandeliers!!!   Susan's Collection is housed in the old Rana Palace section of the Kathmandu Guest House with the lovely high ceilings and detail of a hundred years ago.

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I just happened to be in the right place at the right time to see my friend Meredith and her Morris Minor drive by.   She stopped and we had a quick chat....

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...then off into the traffic sunset.

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Kathmandu is full of marvelous old wood carving, but somehow this window caught my eye.   I don't believe I've even seen the Nepali flag carved in just this way.   Nepal has the world's only 5 sided flag.

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Dan and I have often bought seeds from the Annapurna Seed Company in that charming building in the center of the frame.

Dark days are coming to Kathmandu.   Load-shedding - the local euphemism for planned power outages - is coming in 4 or 5 days.   17-hours-per-day with no electricity.   Supposed to last for only a week, but we shall see.  

If you have any orders for the Danger Dogs, better hurry, as the light on the Valley is fading fast.   Hard to paint in the dark. 

More tomorrow.  Write me with any questions or comments.  I love to hear from you.   ampage1@gmail.com

Comments

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Michael Russ

thanks for sharing and explaining Michelle ! i did'nt understand about the carved window flag though.
Great chandaliers in the guesthouse.
Wonder why it all makes me think of Puerto Vallarta.
Michael

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