- Ruman Shrestha
I feel extremely happy to capture rural lifestyles and natural geographic scenes in pictures and videos. Perhaps it is so as I am a student of Geography and a professional photographer, who prefers to stroll around. I am in this profession for the last 20 years.
I have been strolling for nine years ever since my mother allowed me to go to Gosainkunda at first during the Maoist conflict in the country. Many times I have visited Manang, Mustang, Langtang, and Chitwan including Pokhara and Annapurna. Recently, I got the chance to visit Ghalegaun on October 12, 2019, although I had made up my mind to go there in 2002 only that could not happen due to various reasons.
Last October 12, I took a microbus from Kathmandu Bus Park to Besisahar and reached Ghalegaun after traveling for nearly two hours in a vehicle through a bumpy road. I spent my first night at Ghalegaun homestay. On the second day, I got up early at 5 a.m and captured the sunrise view on my camera. It was very nice as if I had come here by seeing the auspicious moment.
Then I went around Ghalegaun to take the picture. After I headed for Ghanpokhari. It was an uphill road to traverse along the edge of the hill which I covered in almost one hour. On the third day, I got up early and captured the pictures of the sunrise and headed for a stroll around the village of Ghanpokhari.
After lunch, I moved towards Bhujung following a downhill motor road. But I kept walking along this road to reach Bhujung. I kept capturing the pictures in the evening.
On the fourth day, I spent two hours in the morning going around the village. After lunch at 11 a.m. I decided to go to the opposite side of Bhujung village to take pictures of the whole village scenic places. I crossed the Midim River and went down and traveled through the forest while observing the beauty of the forest.
Bhujung village was delightful. Bhujung is another village of Gurung people. The ripe paddy field further added to the beauty of the village. I took many pictures in this village. By evening I returned to the same Bhujung village again. I like to move around Gurung village lanes. My heart gets delighted to see the same type of cluster of houses of Gurung and Newar and their society.
I stayed in Bhujung on the fifth day too. As I uploaded a picture of Ghalegaun on facebook, Prabhakar Raja Bharati and Lasta Joshi who were my schoolmates came to meet me. I strolled around the village with them.
On the sixth day, I planned to reach Bandipur by climbing down to Beshisahar. But another friend of mine Prasanna Shrestha from Kathmandu telephoned me that he was also coming. So, we met at Dumre. Both of us went to Pokhara and stayed at Begnas.
On the seventh day, we went to Rupatal- another famous tourist place to visit in Pokhara- and engaged in bird watching activity there. We took the pictures of birds and surrounding scenes.
Prasanna also liked to take pictures of birds. Then we moved towards Bandipur- another touristic place-popular for Newari culture. We reached Bandipur in the evening and continued to take capture pictures there too. On the ninth day, we captured the view of the sunrise which I liked the most. Then we moved around Bandipur after taking photographs.
We had to return on the same day. We were together until Abukhaireni. Prasanna went to Kathmandu and I headed for Barpak- an epicenter of the earthquake that hit Nepal in 2015.
I reached Barpak after changing three vehicles. As Barpak was the epicenter of the earthquake, I wanted to see and move around this place. On the tenth day, I got delighted to capture the pictures of Barpak’s living styles. At 4 p.m, I headed for Kathmandu from there. I reached Kathmandu after traveling for nine nights and ten days.
My journey was unforgettable that proved to be a lifetime experience due to welcome and farewell hospitality shown at Ghalegaun, Ghanpokhara and Bhujung villages. I remember the local eateries such as Dalbhat, vegetables, pickles, millet dish, Sel roti, and tea. I can’t forget the flower garlands and white tika of these villages specially Bhujung that enabled me to meet with my old school friends.
(Ruman Shrestha- resident of Chagal, Chhauni is a photographer and graphic designer)
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