She

She | 11.2 | Paro Dzongdrakha Gompa 

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We see things, those remote places, and decide it’s worth climbing to them, exploring them. And if you look out there, to virtually any vista, there’s something tucked up there, attached in some precariously sited temple or monastery. What I find particularly compelling, in this sparse setting – of people – is that you find them in the oddest places. That they will come, these people, sauntering out of the woods in the most remote settings. You’ll be out there, way out there, far past any spot that might be accessible, at least to my thinking — and there will be someone there, just sitting in the woods, working on something. Carrying out some bundle. Walking along the road. Working in the stream, chopping or carrying wood in the forest. Where did they come from, where are they going? Usually, they are on a mission, working. And they can disappear as quickly as they reveal themselves — friendly, they’re gone.

So we’d seen this place, high up on the hills, down one of the valleys that lead out of Paro, and there’s this temple and stupa, perched high, overlooking the vale.

And hiked up there.

You can see it, from afar, looking something like this:

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Looking up, it’s like this:
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But climbing up there, exploring, when we finally crested at the location for most of the temple compound. But, in this instance, where was anyone? Someone? There was no evidence of anyone being there, monks or otherwise.

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We explored, the rocky corridors, coursing the cliff faces.

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There was no one, except for her — and even she was hiding:

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Knocking on the door, she popped out, unlocking the door that had been bolted.

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Her point what that she needed to barricade herself into the temple compound for a couple of reasons — one, the relics and sacred art; which are surely significant, the objects housed there. And then too, kids getting in there, clamoring on the rocks and breaking their necks, falling off the cliffs. That was an amusing vision.

Actually, she was the amusing vision. And spectacularly talkative. Non-stop flow of commentaries on virtually everything — from how we were praying to the very nature of the relics, and their link to Guru Rimpoche. She gave us apples, rather ripe they were, that were blessed in the name of the Guru. We gave her cookies.

Here are her gesticulations — explaining all the nature of things sacred and empowered, that reside in that rocky outcropping.
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And what learning, there, from her?

Do your work, even alone, if you have to.

Lock yourself in.

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