Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Apologies for the delay in updating. I have been busy with a group of 11 Singaporean dentists who flew into Kathmandu a week ago. I've been volunteering with them, and I feel like I haven't had a break since I met them at the airport. Besides showing them around Kathmandu, I've been helping organize the 6 days of free dental clinics we are conducting around the villages of the Kathmandu valley. My job during the clinic has been to organize our volunteers, register our patients and do crowd control, which has been exhausting, but very rewarding. We have seen about 800 patients in four days.

The entire group of dentists (11 Singaporean, 2 Nepali) and volunteers at the Shenpen Dental Clinic 2007.

I also escorted the dentists to the Shivapuri National Forest north of Kathmandu on a holiday between our clinics in Boudha and Chapgaon. It was nice to get into nature in a vast forest filled with the blessings of previous Buddhas and years of meditating yogis.

The view from a meditation cave in the Shivapuri forest. Oh, the virtue of the happy life of the hermit!

Rhododendrons in full bloom in Shivapuri forest.

A tree-dwelling near the peak of Shivapuri, used by those looking for solitude in the forest.


A Nepali (Newari) villager in traditional dress getting his teeth cleaned.

A Nepali woman having minor dental surgery done behind our monastery in the village.

Another Nepali villager having her teeth worked on.

Dan Bahadur, the gate keeper at our Chapagaon monastery, smiling after getting a teeth cleaning.

Dan Bahadur's beautiful wife.

A beautiful village girl who came from her home nearby the monastery in Chapagaon for a teeth cleaning.

The beautiful village girl with her beautiful friend.

A local schoolgirl crying as she gets two of her heavily decayed lower molars extracted. Dentistry is pain!

Our smallest monk at the Chapagaon monastery getting his teeth checked by one of the Singaporean dentists, Cheung.

Elderly village men, in traditional attire, waiting for a checkup.


A few images from my trip to India in the first two weeks of March, where I attended teachings by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and visited the reincarnation of Tulku Orgyen Rinpoche in Bir.

An abandoned bike rickshaw at the bus station in Paharganj, Punjab, India.

OM AH HUNG VAJRAGURU PADME SIDDHI HUNG! A mantra written on a stone at the Chokling Monastery in Bir, Himachal Pradesh, India. Homage to Guru Rinpoche!

His Eminence the Neten Chokling Rinpoche conducting the Tsegar Drupchen, associated with Amitayus, the Buddha of Long Life, in his monastery in Bir, Himachal Pradesh, India. He is the lama that made the milarepa movie.


My monk friend Tsultrim, who at the age of 17 pretty much runs the daily operations of the monastery in Chapagaon where I live.

Some Chapagaon monks smiling.

Some of the younger monks in Chapagaon in assembly for afternoon prayers.


Tsering said...

Oh my... we really were quite a group to handle, weren't we? haha... Such a boisterous group with such diverse personalities. Thank you so much for all your help, your time and your patience. Really appreciate your tolerance to our nonsensical antics and ridiculous requests. Take care!

michael smith said...

it was my pleasure

Anonymous said...

Hi michael!!

My name is albert, from spain. I would like to travel and live in kathmandu or some placee in nepal and learn all about monks culture and customs, and after hours of searching in google I saw your incredible experience. I dont`t want to disturbe, so If you can help me just a little I`ll be very gratfull tu you. I want just to know how to arrive and how to live there for sveral months. My e-mail is:

Thank u very much!!

ALbert Jofre

Krish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.