Monday, September 29, 2008

Graven images

in Kathmandu

Yeah, I am so lame. I haven't blogged in nearly a month. But I have been playing Tour Guide to a number of friends tripping through the Du. Literally every time you go to an historic site, you see some new detail. Here are a few I've noticed this past month:

At the entrance to Mhyepi Ajima Buddhist temple. Just an archetypal female figure seated in something like Padmasana, and a bell to call her with. I like the way it's so worn down with centuries that nothing remains but the basic shape.

The torana (carved archway) of Sweto Kali or NarDevi temple, in the heart of Old Kathmandu. If you want to find her, the neighborhood is actually named after her (NarDevi). The white stuff on her mouth is milk-sweets (people "feed" her). Inside the temple are three more Devis. The torana is just a sort of "signboard" heralding the gods that live inside.

An unusually sensual statue of Sri Vishnu, Hindu god of preservation. He obviously seems "glad to see you." My friend Sean in California observed, "instead of sporting a Woody, he's sporting a Stoney."