Name: Tsewang Choezom
Interview Age: 69
Date of Birth: 1946
Birthplace: Penche - Nagchu, Utsang, Tibet
Year Left Tibet: 1959
Political Prisoner: No
Interview No.: 53N
Location: Tashi Palkhiel, Pokhara, Gandaki, Nepal
Categories: Culture and History
Keywords: childhood memories, clothing/weaving, customs/traditions, festivals, nomadic life, refugee in Nepal -- life as, Utsang
Tsewang Choezom was born in Utsang Province to a middle class family of nomads that possessed around 200 goats and sheep and around 20 yaks. In her region the men went to trade while women stayed home milking animals, churning curd and making tsampa 'flour made from roasted barley.'
Tsewang Choezom describes the biggest festival in Tibet called Losar, which is the New Year celebration. Family members decorated their tents and went to watch cham 'religious dance performance by monks' at the nearby monastery, Goyak Gonpa. Tsewang Choezom also talks about yardong, a horse racing festival held during the summer for five days. All the people of nearby regions gathered near to Tsewang Choezom's home. The horses of various colors were decorated with elaborate riding equipment and the men competed in three days of horseracing.
After becoming refugees in Nepal, it was difficult for the family to earn a living. As an adult Tsewang Choezom worked in a carpet-weaving factory and explains the materials and preparations for weaving.
- Katharine Davies Samway (Interviewer)
- Henry Tenenbaum (Videographer)
- Palden Tsering (Interpreter)