Photographer's Note

In the note to my last upload I mentioned that access to Pashupathinath temple is limited for non-Hindu visitors. I wrote: “I decided to stay outside and photograph the façade while my friends: Nepali Ramesh and Bhutanese Leki went inside.”

Here is what happened next… When the guys came out, smiles on their faces and dots of their foreheads, Ramesh suggested I should go inside with them. I had doubts, but how could I say no to such a unique photo opportunity? When I entered the temple courtyard, accompanied by two Asians, nobody paid any attention to my presence in that sacred place, in spite of my big camera and a tripod.

I don’t think I have to explain the significance of what you see in the photo. I wish I could also include the pungent smoke and the smell of burning flesh so you can have the full picture.

I noticed her only when I reviewed the photos back home, several days later. She appears only in one shot, as if she were a ghost. When I look at her, I can’t stop wondering why she was there and what she was thinking. Was she mourning a deceased family member? Or maybe worrying about her own future and living standards after their death? Or, who knows, pondering about how lucky she was sati was no longer practiced in Nepal? Or simply waited impatiently for the ceremony to end and making plans for the rest of the evening… I will never find out.

It’s been over two years since I started this series by posting this image. And now, this is the last photo from Nepal I’m going to upload to TE…

…for now.

Photo Information
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Points: 42
Additional Photos by Kasia Nowak (kasianowak) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1605 W: 9 N: 3251] (16856)
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