First “just ladies” crew is sending greetings from Kargyak

First time in the history of NGO Surya two girls together came to stay in Kargyak for next few months. Anyway, we haven’t got a chance to stay together for a long time yet. Karol had to delay her flight because of some health problems. So Zuzka left on her own to India and had to do shopping of all supplies for the winter. And she managed very well! On the way to Kargyak she had a strong headache when passing over Shingo-la Pass caused by high altitude but she reached Kargyak the day after in good health condition. In the meanwhile the Police from Padum confiscated our school satellite phone, our only connection with the civilization. So in Delhi Karol tried to arrange communication between Kargyak and the Czech Republic through the embassy and search for other possibilities in case we do not get the satellite phone back..well, we still hope we may get it back! (...)


One week later, we finally met each other in Kargyak and took care about the school, which became our main activity. At the moment we are at the end of the school year so we try to revise everything what the children will need for the final exams. When we are not teaching those little devils at school, we try to explore our school and surroundings to find out what useful and useless things we have here. And sometimes it also takes us time to find out how everything works. For example cooking rice in a pressure cooker for the first time ever wasn’t really great success. We are getting better every day but sometimes we still feel like Alice in Wonderland where Wonderland is not even just school but the whole Kargyak. And we like it :). Few days ago we visited our teacher Padma at her home and the day after we couldn’t find her place. We were at the right house but we weren’t able to find the only room in which they live. Kargyak houses are not like ordinary houses. They look normal but when you come inside through the door for the dwarfs you realize that you are underground in a complicated system of narrow corridors and you feel almost like in a cave. And somewhere around  is one little room which is kitchen, living room and bedroom together (quite difficult to explain to kids at school what does kitchen and living room mean when they use one room for everything..). In the middle of the room, there is the stove with chimney, few shelves on the walls with basic utensils, and few mattresses and blankets on the ground. And that’s it. Well, one of our teachers has a little satellite TV in the middle of the room instead of the stove and he always invites us to watch BBC News with him. It is so weird at a place like this. So when we are not exploring the Wonderland there is usually some visiting our school and in the evenings we go and visit the locals. They always invite us to have a cup of tea or dinner with them. It is just after the harvest, all yaks are back to the village, it smells of freshly made chang everywhere, they make fresh butter at homes and use it for the typical salt tea (we still can’t understand why they call it tea..) and all the ladies collect yak shits as the fuel for the winter months.

This lovely atmosphere was interrupted by message that we have to go to Padum to do the registration of the phone in one week time. So Karol left to Padum immediately and she will also buy the last important supplies before the winter. Everybody keep your fingers crossed for the registration as you can read some more interesting reports from us. In the meanwhile, Zuzka is waiting in Kargyak for two new teachers coming before the winter. They should be there when writing this report. It will be impossible to cross the Shingo-la Pass soon. Winter is knocking on our door, it is more than evident every day. Today I woke up to the chilly morning with thin white layer all over. Our Wonderland is going to change to the kingdom of ice and snow soon.

Zuzka and Karol

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