I was born on August 24, 1978 AD. It was Bhadra 9, 2035 BS and the day, according to astrological calculations, was Krishnastami – the birthday of Lord Krishna.
In Nepali, they are known as tarekh (for English calendar day), gate (for Nepali calendar day) and tithi (the astrological day). They all fell on the same day in 1978 but then onwards it’s always a mess.
I only remember one instance when both English and Nepali calendar matched otherwise the tarekh, tithi and gate are all on different days – leaving me with a question: when exactly do I celebrate my birthday?
I was in Lumbini a week ago to attend a seminar. This was my fourth visit to the Birthplace of Buddha, and there was along gap between this and the third one. And, I felt happy about the difference I saw in Lumbini.
Let me begin with a disclosure: I’m a longtime friend of Deepak Rauniyar, the director/producer of Highway. I was not invited to the premier show or private show of the movie. I have donated USD 5 at Kickstarter for Highway and promoted it via my blog and twitter during its production. And, a statement: I have tried to be fair with my writing here (with knowledge gained during my cinematography training in 1992 in Kathmandu and 2011 in Koln; a year of film reporting/reviewing in 1995 in Kathmandu; and a little bit of film studies in 2010 in Oslo).
Is the movie good?
The answer depends on with which movies you compare. If it’s to be compared with mainstream Indian or American movies, it lacks many things. If you compare it with mainstream Nepali movies on the aspect of enjoyment, it’s probably not very good.
I am normally not a great follower of resolutions but despite that I am making a list of 11 things I want to do in 2011.
RETHINK LIFE: I was to do a lot of thinking on life. Review what I have achieved so far and what I expected me to be. This is probably an effect of reading The Last Lecture and Tuesdays with Morrie – two great just-before-death memoir and advices of two professors. Possibly I would also buy The Meaning of Life: A Very Short Introduction to try to understand a little more about life.
I spent almost 20 hours at Ghalegoan, Lamjung – a popular tourism destination for community based rural tourism and left wondering why exactly the village is so popular during the return trip on a jeep through rocky risky road (that took almost three hours to reach Besisahar – the district headquarters).
To say, the village is nestled on the lap of mountains including Lamjung, Annapurna II, Macchapuchhre and Manasalu, the village is at 2,070m (well, Nagarkot which is at one-hour easy drive from my home is at 2,175m), but the scenery I was offered was, well, not breathtaking.
For me, it looked almost foolish to travel/trek/ride that far for the views of the mountains that are offered better at many other easy destinations.
The homestay facility is something to look for. The food/night at a Ghale home was worth experiencing but I like it, I am not fond of homestay. However, my first experience of homestay at Goljung, Rasuwa felt much better (even the mountains).
The traditional-ness of the village is somewhat intact (despite the fact that the traditional Gurung house photo on the brochure is the only one of such type in the entire village).
And, the thing I was expecting but did not get was the briefing. Despite being a member of 30-member team to visit the village, the local tourism committee did not brief us on anything. We were left with hours with nothing to do other than roam around the village.