I'm living pretty close to the woods in the hills along the edge of the valley. It is really great, in fact, the mountain air and the rural setting. I wonder about what lies in the woods, though. One of my favorite stories from studying at Pitzer College Nepal in 2008 was the week I taught English in a small secondary school in Balkot and a leopard wandered into one of the schoolteachers' houses:
|Don't make that face. He was tranquilized. (2008)|
There was a giant crowd and the police had helpfully put up a cordon of red tape. The media was there, and the zoo came and carted the leopard away. I made a brief, completely unintelligible video of it. Anyway, I was talking to the father at my Boharatar residence about this incident and he said that he remembered when that happened. I was surprised that it was such big news in the valley. But according to an article from the Nepali Times, this is happening more and more often:
Leopards rarely attack people when unprovoked. But, unfortunately, there have been more recent incidents in Balkot that ended more tragically for the leopard.