It was a freezing morning of winters in Kaza, the sun was trying hard to warm up Kaza but clouds are being mischievous. As a result bone-chilling wind pierces through your skin. As soon as you enter the town, on the left side of the road down the slope there is a Bus and Taxi stop surrounded by a moderately busy market lane. Locals and Tourist hang out here for food, daily necessities and sometimes aimlessly.
Tripod was told if it goes uphill, there’s a village called Kibber and it’s beautiful. You must be very lucky if can find a ride to Kibber right now. Indeed I was the lucky one.
It was about 7 in the morning in a sleepy town. The smoke was rising up from one of those carefully crafted mud-houses, Surely someone is making Tea.
No one is rushing, no one’s getting late for work, No one missed the last night TV show because they stuck in traffic. Wait! Traffic? No there is no traffic, There is no ‘crowd’, There is no electricity either. They’ll wake up when they feel like, they’ll go to work if they need to and whenever they want to.
An old man in his 70s named Namgyal (every third person have the same name though) just came out of the house to observe the surroundings. He noticed me standing there aimlessly.
The exchange of smile and the old man invited me into the house as if I was an old friend. He insisted that the Tripod should warm up a bit in the Kitchen. The kitchen is the Living room in winters, the Stove is in the middle of the Kitchen, sitting arrangements 3 sides of it, Neatly arranged, all the utensils are kept carefully in a certain order. Front of the Stove is like the control panel of the kitchen and is reserved for the Namgyal’s wife, she owns it and patiently spends hours in here to prepares some delicious food for the family every day.
A few pictures of Dalai Lama along with the Dry Day calendar. The dry days are declared on the Full Moon, Half and the New moon in Ladakh. He must have got this from Ladakh only but then Namgyal’s wife pointed out no one drinks in the entire family so doesn’t really matter, Later she added, even the Sundays don’t.
The Butter Tea is churned in Ghur-Ghur and ready to be served. The tripod just found a good enough reason to be here in Kibber.