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By A. K. Hellum

ISBN-10: 0888643233

ISBN-13: 9780888643230

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Extra resources for A Painter’s Year in the Forests of Bhutan

Sample text

No, most were just on their way home on this late afternoon, so they had no time. But some came to see and to comment. "You see the purple colour there," he would say, pointing to the flower he had just criticized me for. "That is almost what it looks like on this plant," as he held up a greenish specimen he had found. It is amazing how well Bhutanese children are taught English in the army school at Dechhenchholing, and this boy obviously showed off his skill even to those who understood only Dzongkha and who shook their heads and smiled at his antics.

Schott Summer 33 A Painter's Year in the Forests of Bhutan 34 TJ/e^ixsw' Yy[tM\&&' \JP*tiMt\MMk VWAttfUA') is a common member of the mint family that grows well in Europe, as it does in the Himalayas and even in North America. These plants grew by the road to upper Thimphu, Mutigthang, in early June 1989. Their brown and bristly seed heads in fall are as handsome as the springtime flowers. While concentrating on this painting, I was suddenly chased into the car by a rain squall, a harbinger of the monsoon rains of summer.

I went to check and found a patch of thorn apples. The seed heads on these datura plants rattle in the wind. Rattle, rattle, rattle and then quiet, and then more rattling. It sounded like tiny castanets, soft and high-pitched. But because the wind was gusty, there was no syncopation or rhythm to the sounds. " I thought, then, about why the Bhutanese often ring bells. They do this to open up a way for their prayers. These datura pods were like bells of nature and I was being reminded of the need to be centred rather than dispersed in my mind.

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A Painter’s Year in the Forests of Bhutan by A. K. Hellum


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