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We've been named as a official selection in the Southern Circuit of Filmmakers Tour, March 17-24.

Shows are in Hapeville, GA 3/17, Madison, GA 3/20, Orangeburg, SC 3/22, Gainsville, GA 3/23, and Manteo, NC 3/24.
Learn more by going to the SouthArts blog.

View the theatrical trailer for A Gift for the Village

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Home - From Jane

This is Jane, writing from my Glade Road computer, with one of my fourteen cats,
Mary, insistently on my lap. It is Friday, August 10th, and our crew of seven
have now all returned and disbanded, with Jason in West Virginis to guide a
lucky whitewater rafting crew, and Tom and Diane in Roanoke, and Sherrie,
before she returns to Hawaii, enjoying her family and friends in Dublin and
elsewhere.

Jenna and I were at Carl's and Reba's early this morning, to sit on the porch
with the hot pink geraniums, ruby-throated hummingbirds, and heady rubrum
lilies, to help send off Sunil, Sarita, their son Manoj, his girlfriend
Sheetal, and her best friend, Haseena--our friends from Nepal. Will Landon and
Mary and Ella Hoffman were there, too, hugging our Nepali family goodbye, and my
son Emerson would have been, except that he was in Roanoke, shopping in
preparation for his flying soon to Malibu, where he will start in less than two
weeks at Pepperdine University. And my daughter Iris sent her love from New
Orleans. She especially appreciates how hard Sunil's and Sarita's son Manoj
has had to work to come from Kathmandu with little English and then to graduate
from the University of Kentucky, his English now surpassing many Americans'.
Like Manoj, Iris has had to work 40 to 60 hours a week, several concurrent
jobs, while taking heavy courseloads, and like Manoj, she has done the
impossible.

We cried, parting with our friends, who at least this time know that we hope to
complete the documentary and raise the funds to return, to show the film in
Kathmandu and Jomsom, as soon as possible. Sunil and Sarita thanked Carl and
Reba for hosting them so generously; and thanked us for showing them Virginia
Tech, especially the April 16th memorial in progress, the horticultural
gardens, Price's Fork Elementary and Blacksburg Middle School, a house being
constructed, Pandapas Pond--where Sarita learned to skip rocks, Claytor
Lake--where Sunil tried valiantly to get up on water skis ("Trying, trying, but
not possible," he laughed), and all of our homes for many dinners. They enjoyed
the 20-minute collection of video images that Tom Landon has put together as a
teaser of what we have to work with for our film, and this only from his camera
(Jenna and I now will be reviewing and logging her hours of video footage too),
since none of these Kathmandu Valley friends has ever traveled out west in
Nepal, where our festival and our treks were. They enjoyed having kids sit in
their laps, love them, hug them good morning, and entertain them--Mary and Ella
and Will did such a good job being friends to "the Nepali people," as Ella
called them so casually. For me it was amazing to see Manoj and Emerson
together, who had known each other when Emerson was three and Manoj was eleven.
Back then, Emerson sat on Manoj's lap. Today, they are two handsome young men,
discussing college and how they will link up in Calirfornia, with Emerson in
Malibu and Manoj in San Francisco soon. All of us in the crew of A Gift for
The Village see our friendships already happening in the generations following
ours, and, as many speakers said during the festival in Nepal, and as Jenna
said at the end of her speech that day, may this friendship between our two
parts of the world last a thousand years.

So this is, in a way, the first day that Jenna and I, and probably Reba too,
feel "back," simply because now we are not with our Nepali friends, and no one
from Kathmandu is in the kitchen.

Jenna has been working already to post some photos on-line. These are photos
from her video-camera's still shot capacity. If you have already seen them,
you know how excellent they are.

A few of our friends have received their presents--Suzi Gablik and Dollie
Cottrill and Andrea Langston. What a pleasure to bring back little pieces of
Nepal! Emerson's two masks from Swayambhunath made it home safely, thanks to
bubble wrap. So did the lama table that Tsampa carved and painted and
presented to me at the festival. So did all of our things from Mr. Bhatt. Now
that we are back, we really look forward to seeing so many of you!

I have noticed a few changes since I have gotten home. One is that I want
strange things for breakfast, and I want my breakfast between four and five
a.m.; for example, a plate of pickled okra and diced raw onion. Another
morning, I ate a cereal bowls' worth of Virginia peanuts soaked overnight in
lime juice with minced garlic and minced hot green peppers, like a cold spicy
soup. One morning I ate two giant sliced tomatoes with olive oil and basil
leaves and raw sliced garlic. One morning, when Jenna and Reba and Mary and
Ella and I took Sunil and Sarita to Crow's Nest, to meet Charlie O'Dell and to
pick raspberries and blackberries, I ate two pints of berries. Jenna is making
blackberry smoothies, and I wish I had one right now.

I also noticed that the oldest of my cats were the happeist to see me. Mary,
the undisputed queen of this pack, walked up to me as if to hug me when I
returned. She was vocal and physical and her expression showed that she really
understood my absence and my return. Rare, the second-oldest, was also
delighted, and didn't stop purring for the entire day. Even my backyard
hoodlum cats didn't shy when I went out to visit them. Poor things, in this
hundred-degree heat.

It is good to be home. And I think I speak for all of us when I say that Nepal
and Tsampa and his family and his village all treated us like family. It was
good to be home there as well. Tashi Deleg.

5 comments:

Garland said...

Thanks, Jane, for a glimpse of the past week, especially of Sunil and Sarita. Surely it was kind of sad to bid them farewell and send them off homeward bound. This event left wonderful indelible memories etched on lots of folks, the pictures and videos vivid testamonies of the fact. The thousands of pictures have become a vast library of memory pegs to punch and recall them.

I've seen all of Sherrie's as I've burned them to backup hard drive and DVDs. Kind of like speed reading, I speed viewed them as I checked the burns. There were many I paused to view specifically. It was quite a trip, and I've especially enjoyed "tagging along" by blogs and the pictures posted.

Be assured I'll appreciate all the time you'll spend to catalog and process your photos and video, and the selections you choose for us to see. Thanks, as high as the Himalayas, in all their snowcapped and cloud draped beauty.

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