Mon. 5th – Leh
Today is Hiroshima Day (actually, it falls on the 6th). I wonder if the Japanese priest up at the growing Peace Pagoda is having a day of prayers? Or is he too busy preparing for the visit of the Dalai Lama on August 25th? (He’d gone to Leverett, Massachusetts for the opening of another Peace Pagoda.)
Dalai Lama in Ladakh 2012
From 5pm last night, announced with a brief flash of lightning and an echoing thunderous clap, until 5am this morning, the rains returned with a vengeance. The roof leaked in many places and a became part of a jigsaw puzzle trying to fit my frame into a dry patch. Next door, three Germans had it worse and kept me awake more than the drips on my pillow.
The rains have receded, and the ground is wetter than ever. I received a tape of Ladhaki music. Unfortunately, this is ‘modernised’ music featuring guitars and tablas rather than da-man (drums) and sunas (wind instruments akin to oboes) . Recording too owes little to BBC standards, but having seen the All-India Radio station here in Leh, I’m not over surprised. That Moru Namgyal, the producer, allowed me a copy, from his reel-to-reel to my blank cassette tape, and then hand-delivered it to me at the guest house says much for the openness and generosity of the Ladhakis.
It’s a fine souvenir which will bring back memories for many years.