Dear Anchi, Nawang, Pemba and Dawa,
We are so sorry to learn about your Pemba’s passing. He was a great man, a wonderful, caring human being. We adored him, and felt immediately comfortable with him when he we first him almost thirty years ago. He trekked with and cooked for us in Nepal in those early days, and was so hospitable. We have felt close to him over the years, despite the distance and infrequent times we got to see him. Whenever Pemba would come to Ann Arbor, we did make it a point to have dinner with him at Joan and Will’s, and several times Pemba also came to our house. Last year, I remember we had wonderful conversation about Swami Ramdev, Nepal politics, his visits with his children, and the restaurant in Sonoma.
We never had silences in any of our conversations. We talked about many things from serious politics of Nepal to funny stories of travelers to philosophy of Buddhism. Pemba always talked so appreciatively of you Anchi and his family and we had fun sharing many parenting stories. When the children were little it was about the challenges and joys of raising young ones (as we also had two boys and a girl), and when older, the hopes for doing well in school, future careers and relationships. He was always so concerned as a father, and felt so proud of you Anchi as a mother, and took joy in each one of the children.
We are glad that Pemba got to read our note last week and see the photos of our (pre-kids) 1982 trek and dinner with Sherup so long ago. He introduced us and so many others to the richness of Nepal, Sherpa culture and the majesty of nature. He gave us and so many others the generous gift of sharing himself. And that is to what we are most grateful. Though Pemba was not blessed with a longer life, he was certainly blessed by the love that so many people around the world felt for him.
May his memory always provide you with strength, may the beauty of his soul remain a guiding light for you as you move through the rest your lives here on earth. We are are thinking and praying along here with you here.
~Rita Benn and Steve Lapedis