By Sonam Doomtso, བསོད་ནམས་དུང་མཚོ། bsod nams dung mtsho
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Mother is a skilled cook. We made fried bread, one of my favorites; several cheesecakes and jyoma cakes; and other traditional Tibetan foods. "Mother, why do you make so many cakes? " I asked, putting the cakes in a drawer where we normally put bowls. "We won't eat them all. We'll take a few cakes to pay a customary visit to our relatives who live far away and offer good wishes for their health and longevity," she said, washing her hands in a basin. 6 Small, edible wild roots. •46• "Where are our relatives?
Yes, I saw them killing the marmots and skinning them. " Tsering Lhamo said, sobbing convulsively, making it hard for her to speak properly. "Oh, my Buddha! " Grandmother said, her head bent, and then she started chanting. "What else are they doing? " asked a boy. "First, I saw some smoke and, thinking there was a fire, I went there. I saw these evil men smoking the marmots out of their tunnels. As soon as they came out, they used a sharp metal rod to stab them to death," Lhamo said, tears in her eyes.
Mother patted her back, but Lhamo trudged off, sobbing bitterly. "We should stop them. This is our place and we should do something to protect our animals. We should chase them away from our place immediately," said one young man, his fist in the air. I moved to my family and stood near Uncle Dorje. I clutched Mother frantically. "No, we should talk to them and try to stop them first," said Uncle Samkho, who always thought carefully, which led others to respect him. The wind blew harder. People moved closer to the tent seeking shelter.
ASIAN HIGHLANDS PERSPECTIVES Volume 19: A Nomad Girl's Changing Worlds by Sonam Doomtso, བསོད་ནམས་དུང་མཚོ། bsod nams dung mtsho