Who would have guessed that stepping into a cosy pub in Chipping Campden (North Cotswolds) one evening enticed by a very funny man playing the piano could lead us to a slice of Nepal / Tibet the next day. I just love chance happenings!
Massive thank yous once again to Keyna; a co-founder comedian of Creative Cows Comedy Club who we met that evening and suggested we visit this stunning gallery/cafe in the middle of the countryside.
Alain Rouveure Galleries is a treasure trove mysteriously located in Todenham near Moreton-in-Marsh that focuses on Tibetan rugs, Himalayan Textiles & Tribal Art. There could not be a better place to locate such a gem in the green fields of The Cotswolds.
Alain's travels had magnetised him to the Himalayan region where he became fond of the Tibetan people, their culture and was inspired by their long & arduous, freedom-wanting walks from Tibetan land to Nepal. His aims we were told were to encourage Tibetans based in Nepal to restore and maintain their traditional rug-making techniques. Thus, he set up a social business and has been selling them at the shop on the grounds. Lots of treasures from the Himalayan region can be found at the centre.
What we found particularly found exciting were was the cafe and its serving of Dhal soup. The flavours were deep and immense! The soup was made by a friendly and humble Nepalese man behind the counter; who comes from an area largely affected by the initial recent earthquake. Thankfully his family are alive but their houses are no longer. He remains positive and unharmed, calmly saying - "What can we do...?" ('The Law of Nature' and Acceptance - this comes into my head). After my experience of spending four months in the Himalayan region in 2009, I continue to admire Himalayan ways....always.
In addition we were lucky enough to witness a stunning temporary exhibition of the Jhankris people of Nepal. Old and worn traditional costumes, instruments and artefacts displayed (...in the middle of the British countryside!). Wonderful.
The surrounding garden area of the centre is well-manicured and looked after. Green and lush with buddhist and contemporary art scupltures dotted around, benches to relax on, cats roaming around....it also houses a therapy centre. Idyllic.
If you're ever in The Cotswolds and want a taste of the Himalayas, visit Alain Rouveure Galleries!
Many thanks once again to Keyna :)
Please donate to Nepal: www.globalgiving.org or another charity of your choice.