Monday, 24 July 2006

Sad News from Nepal

Last January I commiserated with God-King Gyanendra for the pudding basin he was obliged to wear on his head on ceremonial occasions.

The hot news from Kathmandhu is that by popular demand he is to be stripped of the major powers derived from his God-head and Kingship, and will in future be permitted to carry out only three ceremonial duties: accepting the credentials of new ambassadors, visiting a girl-goddess at the temple where he was formerly patron, and receiving a priest who flashes at him a bejewelled undergarment in a holy ceremony. None of these sound much fun except possibly the second.

There is perhaps some compensation for the poor fellow in that he may no longer have to wear that silly plumed thing on his head. However, ordinary Nepali hats do little for one’s dignity, and he probably won’t regard its replacement as much of an improvement.

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