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  • For two hours I hiked through wet pasture land toward a monastery that could I see from my hotel rooftop in the distance. Not knowing what to expect, I was surprised to find a bustling courtyard, full of monks young and old. Being fairly inaccessible, a foreigner with a camera was something of a curiosity, and everyone seemed amused by my presence. As I explored the grounds, taking photos of posing teenage monks in Nike trainers, I felt the watchful eyes of one old man. He was seated by a statue of a lion, looking quite lion-esque himself. After a time, I approached him. I motioned with my camera and thought I saw a nearly imperceptible nod. I took the photo and returned the nod. His expression never once changed.
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