Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Word has it that the monsoon season is coming to an end soon, which is a shame- really. Here in Kathmandu it's been quite mild, and only rains for part of each day. Usually only a half hour or so may be a hard, fast rain. The monsoon seems a blessing, washing everything clean, and making the valley a fertile land. It is beautiful to see the city transformed as the rain comes and goes, part of the rhythm of natural life here.

Shrine Keeper

Holy Man


Pashupatinath is the sacred Shiva temple on the banks of the Bagmati river in Kathmandu. One of the most important Hindu shrines in Nepal, the dead are cremated along its riverbanks. There are 2 ghat areas for cremation- the one closest to the temple is for the royals and the rich- the one further down is for everyone else. Family members may actualize the cremation ritual, which is the case with the 2 young men pictured with shaved heads who were cremating their father (observing a timeless tradition) or, the family may opt to hire someone to take charge of the pyre. Mourners gather, and the atmosphere is serious, but almost festive, as death is integrated as an inevitable part of human life.

Not far from the river and the temple is a poor home for the elderly, who, not far from death, are within an arm's throw to the ghats.

Women and Men; Day and Night

Tea Girl in Durbar Square

As the sun begins to set, Kathmandu's Durbar Square comes alive. I was mesmerized watching this young girl delivering tea up and down the tiered temple steps, where people were sitting to watch the action below. Somehow, I wasn't quite able to make the best pictures of this scene, so this is a sketch for another try...

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Gods and Demons of Kathmandu

The streets of Kathmandu are filled with the sacred and profane colliding at every turn. I arrived on Monday, exhausted after 3 long days of travel and was immediately swept up (and overwhelmed) by the chaos here. These are my first photographs, taken with a 35mm rangefinder film camera (an expensive habit that could easily get addictive!)

Monday, July 7, 2008

My gypsy life

I arrived in Brooklyn on Saturday, a short stop on my way to Nepal. With 2 suitcases, my camera gear and computer, I am ready for the wandering life.