Tibetan World on Sundays

[Guest post by Lhakyi]

Sunday school was where I escaped from the world of injis. In Sunday school I had a core group of friends and, of course, I was the ring leader. Only because I appointed myself as the leader and no one dared to argue with me (I was a bully! haaahaa). On Sunday’s I forgot about being “different”. Don’t get me wrong, my school was diverse but within that diversity, I was still the only Tibetan girl. So on Sundays I was like my inji class-mates. I had companions who spoke the same language and cultural identity as me. I didn’t realize how important it was to me then.

Between our Tibetan language lesson and dance classes, we were given a 20-40 minute break. So we were allowed to roam the small area our Sunday school was located. My friends and I would sit outside and talk. Our conversations were mainly about who had a crush on who in the community. Since our age-group was small, our crushes were limited. So we recycled our crushes a lot. For example, one girl would like Tenzin and she would gush to us about how much she loves Tenzin. Come next Sunday, her heart now belonged to Tashi because she just realized how sweet he is. The Sunday after that she would rediscover why she fell for Tenzin in the first place.

Within our conversations, we always talked about things that we all knew the other would know about. We would all catch up with eachother on what was happening at home or what good Hindi movie/song to watch/sing. However, we avoided conversations about things that we didn’t know about each other. We all went to different schools and lived in different areas. We never talked about any of our inji crushes, in fact, we never or didn’t talk much about our inji schools or friends. It was a silent unconscious agreement between all of us.  We all felt like Sunday school was our (Tibetan) time and we lived in this bubble of just “Tibetan-ness” in those moments. On Sundays we left our inji world for a short while and just enjoyed being Tibetan.