As usual, I woke up early and went for a walk to explore Kaza. Every side was covered with huge mountains and early sun rays were not reaching the place. The road was empty but full of dogs. There were two packs of dogs, I have never seen this many dogs in a pack. They were having their territory war, it was fun watching them chase one pack by the other. Both the pack of dogs were led by an Alpha dog, I have only seen in movies about the alpha wolf but didn’t know they existed with dogs also. I walked around capturing the beauty of the mountains and reached back at our stay.
Our hosts were awake by now and they offered me coffee. I sat in the common room where a song was playing. The song was so calming and I felt being in a trance. I asked our host about the song and he told me it is a Tibetan mantra song and shared with me the youtube link of that song (it’s one of my favorite songs now). By now one by one everyone was down at the common area. We parceled our breakfast and went for our expedition, There were many exciting places we were going to cover today.
Our first stop was at Dhankar Monastery (Dhang or dang means cliff, and kar or khar means fort. Hence Dhangkar means fort on a cliff), The monastery is situated at an elevation of 3,894 metres (12,774 feet) in the Spiti Valley above Dhankar Village, between the towns of Kaza and Tabo. Dhankar was the traditional capital of the Spiti Valley Kingdom during the 17th century and has some features dating back to the 12th century. It was the seat of the early rulers of Spiti, the Nonos, who had the right to cultivate the government lands nearby and were required to keep the fort in repair.
We reached the entrance which is situated at the new monastery and got down. The old monastery was closed as the lamas had come to the new monastery for prayer. Niharika went ahead and talked to the monks and got us an opportunity to see the old monastery. Two young monks accompanied and took us to the old monastery. They were very energetic and showed us inside the monastery. Only 20 people were allowed at a time into the monastery due to the earthquake which happened earlier destroyed and made unstable most parts of the old monastery. We got a chance to meditate inside the monastery and Niharika helped us to feel the energy there. We all left with that energy to our next destination.
We reached Komic Monastery but it was closed and we continued our Journey towards Langza. It was drizzling when we reached Langza. We could see the back of the statue. I was looking towards visiting the statue for a long time. One fact I came to know later is that the village in which the statue is situated only has 3 houses and it has the highest voting both also.
Our next destination was Hikkim and I have already collected the addresses of my friends and colleagues. Hikkim has the highest post in the world. We had to hike down, to reach the post office and got postcards from the postmaster. The postmaster is being stationed therefrom 1983. We wrote down our thoughts in a hurry as the post office was going to close.
Our actual plan was to visit Key Monastery also, but we changed our plans and went back to Kaza as it was already late. On the way, stopped and spend some time on the road as it had a beautiful view of Spiti valley.
We went shopping at Kaza when we reached. Some of us went to buy a cake. We were throwing a surprise birthday party for Sonali by midnight.