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Sunday, April 5, 2015

Lihi Gaon to Lho via Hinang Gompa

Our sleep at the attractive village of Lihi Gaon was disturbed - 101 Dalmation like - by the village dogs, whilst dawn was enlivened by fighting mules in the field adjacent to our camp site.
After breakfast we were visited by a welcoming party from three nurses from Community Action Nepal (I now work for that charity); they run Health Posts in Lihi and two other villages we'd passed on our way. They extended a gracious invitation to visit them at work at their mobile Dental Health Clinic up at the Hinang Gompa where local villagers were gathering for a important Buddhist festival.
Most of Group 3 welcomed the idea of a diversionary trip and so we set off up through a pine forest and were greeted at the Gompa gates. Decked with khata scarves and rhododendron blossoms and a photo call, we moved onto an audience with the Rimpoche Tulko (a reincarnated Lama). Meanwhile locals were queuing up for examination in the Dental tent. They even summed up brave smiles for our cameras before and after extraction. Children and small dogs were milling around, contributing to the surreal atmosphere.
A service followed in the Gompa, where paper cups of salty nak (female yak) tea was served. Some of us found this treat quite challenging! Unfortunately most of our party had slipped out when the Rimpoche started delivering a sermon in English, specially for our benefit.
Weather broke as we walked up to our next destination, the lovely village of Lho. We arrived wet but cheerful.
Denise Prior

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