It was splendid experience in Temisgam, to live, teach and explore the lives of Ladakhis in remote areas. We took a pit stop in Leh for a day and refreshed ourselves before we head out east for the next task.Unlike Temisgam the task in Durbuk was different. We had to setup libraries in three schools and conduct some work shops in each school. This time we were a team of five and we had one school per day.

Tall windows form walls on two sides in many homes, allowing ample sunlight to come in

sunny and beautiful

Chang-la, third highest pass

Our Library shelves en-route Changla

Pits stop to fix the snapped rope

Twists and turns

After many zigs and zags, at check post

Govt Middle school Tangtse

We travelled through zigzag roads, across the third highest pass- Chang la before we reached Tangtse, a remote village about 100km towards east of Leh.

When we walked through the small entrance to the Govt primary school we were taken by surprise to see children dressed traditionally and lined up along with their parents to welcome us. We cherished the traditional songs and dance that the children put up for everyone gathered there in spite of a holiday.

That’s how we were welcomed in the first school in Durbuk block


They even put up a show for us

Chuspen and his dancing troop

It was great honor for us to work with such humble and hospitable people

Unloading begins

Almost everyone from the village lend hand to set up library

Tangtse being remotely located a library with many books was a big reason for celebration for the villagers. We were helped possibly by everyone, from small pre-schoolers to the eldest of the village to set up shelves, books and reading desks. Before we realized, the library was ready and was being occupied by curious children and inquisitive elders with a book each.

Half done library

Classification and labeling

More labeling

Hoola hoops

Sarpanch of the village getting hands on some books

Later on we went on to do a story reading in the open lawn and an art workshop  let children express their imaginations with colors. This was followed by a games session where girls tried all their skipping skills, boys kicked the football hard and few of them tried best to hold the hoola-hoops on to their waists.

Yes more attempts to hold he hoops onto the waist

Nah, it is going down

Skipping time

In the air

Happy hop

It was an overwhelming experience for the FOL team to have set up library and spend time with everyone in Tangtse. This was first of the three libraries we set up in Durbuk block, we were thrilled with the experience and looked forward for the following libraries.


After a much satisfying work day we head towards the monastery at Tangtse. The Monastery was built into the hill and not on top of a hill like they are usually are. This reminded me of the famous Monastery from Bhutan. The monks were involved in preparation for some pooja, and it appeared very festive at the time we reached on top.

Monastery @ Tangtse

Preparation for pooja

Barely used to make idols and lamps

Barely known as ‘Sampa’ is used along with butter for the rituals

They said post rituals these idols/preparations are fed to cows or birds

Music accompanied

Tashi, the ‘3 idiots’ star

Dusk at Tangtse

Tangtse panorama

In all it marked end of another memorable day. We had traveled a bit, done one library, workshops, played games before we spent good time in Monastery. The food at the guest house was delicious, so were the stories and Jenga sessions we had before we crashed. The following day was long we had to visit the popular Pangong lake and complete the biggest of the three libraries.

Continued to part ii