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After yesterday’s jaunt up the Settle and Carlisle I’m back in the bosom of the Calder Valley catching up on paperwork and picture editing before the Easter holiday hits. Not that we’ve got anything exciting planned, it’ll be a time to consolidate at home using the days wisely in order to work on the cottage and get the place spruced up for the summer. True to form for British bank holidays the weather’s looking mixed. Earlier I was out on my daily constitutional, basking in sunshine and 20 degree temperatures whilst pausing to sit on the cliffs overlooking the Calder Valley for a few moments of quiet contemplation whilst taking in the views and the rays. On Easter Monday the forecast is for snow and temperatures of -1! There’s an old joke about the UK – we don’t have a climate, we have weather – you never know whether it’s going to rain, sleet or shine! I must admit I’m looking forward to being able to get back out to Asia again once this is all over – and the weather plays a part. It’s not just the fact that it’s generally more predictable, it’s also the fact that if it rains – it’s warm rain. In the meantime I’ll have to put up with whatever gets thrown at me.

I’m fervently hoping that Easter goes well and that people don’t forget why we’re doing what we’ve been doing because of Covid and pretend we’re already back to normal because some rules are relaxed – and the sun’s out. Besides, so many people have had their first vaccination so what’s the problem? Complacency could still be the death of people but I’ll be damned if it’s going to be the death of me. I’ve too big a ‘bucket list’ to kick it now!

Buckets aside, here’s the latest picture of the day which has was the first picture from my latest batch of slide scans that caught my eye. It was taken by the bus station in Janakpur, Nepal on the 9th March 1992.

This is a row of pedal-rickshaw Wallahs waiting for their next fare. They’re a common sight across the Indian sub-continent and other parts of SE-Asia. I have to confess that when I first went to India I refused to use them as I thought it was demeaning that another person should haul me around like this. Then an older traveller pointed out that all I was doing was depriving these people of money out of the wrong principles and that I’d always pay more than a local (but I could afford it) so get off my moral high-horse. He was right of course. Since, I’ve often enjoyed riding with these guys as many of them have a wicked sense of humour and they’ve given me some memorable and fun experiences. One time a friend and I charted a rickshaw wallah like this to take us around Agra in India. It was some of the best money we spent as he showed us so much more than we’d otherwise have seen, he shared his stories (and his food) and at one point we even got him in the back and pedalled him around! Great memories…

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