By Kondro Tsering
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Extra info for Asian Highlands Perspectives, Vol. 17: A Zorgay Tibetan Childhood
Only one student passed the arithmetic examination that first semester. Our arithmetic teacher scolded us, never comprehending it was both his and our problem. ▪47▪ I was satisfied with what I had learned from the Chinese teacher and kept a diary during the holiday in Chinese as my teacher asked, but I did not touch the arithmetic book, nor did I finish the holiday arithmetic assignments. The biggest poplar tree in Zorgay County. ▪48▪ 12 COWARD BOY I was given many nicknames, but I liked 'Coward Boy' best.
I ate the ball of tsampa from my bag, but it did not fill my hungry stomach. We brought food with us to school, for our home was too far away to go back for lunch. Brother had no class that day either. We just registered and handed in our tuition fees. By Buddha's blessing, Brother at last came, smiled, and said "What's happening? " I said nothing and we headed home at noon. I have never felt more bored in my life than that first day in school. Traditional stove in the author's home. ▪36▪ 9 MY FIRST YEAR IN SCHOOL E verything has a beginning, as did my academic career.
41▪ resumed our journey. We reached the sacred site of Tara where many people were worshipping some time later and found the holy water there had all been taken by pilgrims, so we merely touched the wet part of the rock and licked our hands to get a bit of the water. Women melodiously chanted Om ma ni pad me hum, men put up scripture flags, and others offered incense while scattering holong,14 the smaller paper prayers that are often called 'wind horses'. We climbed ladders to the hollow entrance of a cave.