Julley (जुले ) is not just a word. It’s a magical word. Not a single word, it's a complete sentence, or a story. And sometime, it is more than a sentence. Julley is a mesmerizing word that gets your work done anywhere in Ladakh. It brings you respect, helps you find way, gets you tasty food, brings you closer to local people, makes new Ladakhi friends, gets you helping hands and many more.
Julley (or Joolay) is a common word in Ladakh (and tribal areas of Himachal including Lahaul-Spiti, Kinnaur and parts of Kullu) which means Namaste, hello, hi. Meaning of Julley has changed over the time. Now some people use Julley to bid good bye also. The local people, mostly Buddhists, of Ladakh and Himachal wish each other with words like Julley and Tashi Delek (or Tashi Dile). The Julley word has grown so famous among the military people in Ladakh that they also have started to wish people by saying Julley every time they start conversation. If somebody says you Julley, just reply: “Julley” with smile on face and a little hunched shoulders to express your respect to the person.
Julley has now also become famous among the outsiders. It all started with tourism boom in Ladakh and local people here started wishing travellers with Julley. Now, whenever you visit Ladakh, you will hear Julley a lot of times a day. Julley refers to respect. If you want to start conversation with Ladakhi man or woman, just say Julley with smile on your face, and see the magic happening itself. The person will himself/herself show his/her interest in you, with faith and respect.
You are driving a jeep (or bike) and you have some technical problem. You want help. Just say Julley to occupants of that area and they will put all possible efforts to help you. You forgot your way back hotel, you don’t know from where to take diversion to Pangong Lake, you are searching for a dhaba, you are looking for a medical store, you want to know about the local culture of a village, your phone is not working and want local person to allow you to use his cellphone or want a lift in a car, Julley makes it possible for you. But remember; don’t feel like buttering, deceiving or getting your work done selfishly by riding on the shoulders of Julley. Julley is a respect. So earn it, spread it and make it your smile and your ornament. Respect local culture, respect Julley.