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Monday, June 19, 2017

An Inspiration (A tribute)

Though unsung,
An exemplary hero was he.
A fearless soldier,
Man of his words with guts of steel.

Hands of iron,
Braved the tempest alike melody,
Sung the song of a fighter,
Waved the banner high of allegiance.

The song of the fighter,
Sung in the spirit of countryman-ship,
Comradeship and family,
In the soul of love oared comrades ashore.

Rampage of the tempest,
Tore him not a bit.
Embraced the rainbow afar,
Danced amongst the wind.

Time went on, but the clock of memories stood still,
Not to live in yesterdays, but to walk forward,
Not forsaking tranquility in the country,
For somebody sacrificed his life!
 .
A salute, a praise,
A tribute, a prayer
The fallen unsung hero.
You are an inspiration!



Dedicated to my favorite ashim Chimi’s late apa and to all the Fallen Heroes, who gave up their lives in line of duty; so we can have some peace!

If we are living happily, safely and peacefully then remember there were
unsung heroes who gave their lives so we can have some peace and love.
My deepest RESPECT to all our fallen heroes!!!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Nonetheless, Thimphu is a lovely home

My shoddy art, but I am learning


Making out for all those #artclasses at #vastbhutan I have missed, today I took out some time to draw the logo of Royal Bhutan Flower Exhibition as a tribute to this wonder exhibition. And also as I was managing the Public Toilets at the Royal Bhutan Flower Exhibition, Thimphu Chorten. 

It is quite a meditation when you relearn how to draw out of your busy schedule, busy schedule yes since you have to do two different jobs 1 in office doing social services during day time, and 2 at home in the night to earn some so you cover up your monthly expenses. One may wonder why 2 jobs and the over work? But that's how you survive in this economically driven expensive capital: Thimphu. 

Nonetheless, Thimphu is a lovely home.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

An easy one-day hike to the great Dungtsho

The Great Dungtsho. In the pic ashim Ching and Dolma

Many a time, as always on Sundays we wake up very late, then watch some movies, grab some tea and sleep again. Before you realise another Sunday would just demise, and nothing would matter much since it is Sunday. It is over. But then little do we realise there is so much more to Sunday than just lazying around in the bed for the entire day, when she submits to Monday and we frown, "Agrrr, it is Monday again!" Not often, but as far as possible we the #TREKKERS360 degreeians make a point to hit the mountains on weekends either to ease our mind, body and soul or just for an adventure. 

Last Sunday on 14th May 2017, we decided on an easy one-day hike to the great Dungtsho a few hours past Phajoding. Six of us confirmed and at 6 AM just four of us gathered at the base. But our spirits were as high as the mountain itself, so we began ascending easy from Motithang palace at 6.49 AM. It was all filled with jokes and laughs. We talked on about anything and giggled at everything. Like some puppies let out in an open after keeping enclosed for months, we hopped hither thither up the trail. A few steps short to Phajoding we were talking on some books and then came in Sangay Khandu a.k.a DrukAir that lately he had started reading books on managers and leaderships. We sensed a sudden shift and upon insisting he surprised us, he was in fact recently  promoted to a Managerial post, which none of the fellow #TREKKERS360degreeians knew about. We congratulated him on behalf of all the TREKKERS360degreeians midst jungle where chilly morning  breeze lifted his zest and spirit to work harder way up. We were in Phajoding 3650 meters above the sea level at 9 AM, such a fine place to celebrate his promotion: we drank black tea. 

Enroute Thuji Drak 4000 meters
Yes, Thimphu is down below

Phajoding

The monks told us it is 8 to 9 hours hike to and fro the great Dungtsho. We started counting on our fingers and talked amongst ourselves, "We were either quite late or the distance is too far." No matter how far the lake is or late if at all we were, an easy hike it is; we did much harder treks than this,  that much we knew and so decided to hike at our own pace. Just as hiking to Phajoding, leisurely did we hike past Phajoding. Before reaching Thuji drak 4000 meters we drank all our tea and small packets of snacks. Took some photos. Ashim Ching Ching sniffed some flowers. We cracked some jokes and laughed our lungs out. The weather was pleasant since morning, Dolma made a video calling to ashim Lhamu back in Thimphu who could not join us. She advised us to keep the pace and that sounded reassuring. One step at a time we started bucking up. 


Dolma did sniff some flowers :D
Ashim Ching and the Rhododendron 
Mr. Drukair and Dolma

At 11.49 AM we made to Laptsa 4084 meters. Thimphu lied far below like a stroke of white paint brush later tinted with grey dots.  Such a breath taking view. I had a mixed feeling, that was my 6th time there - but never been to the lake - every time I noted Thimphu growing and the laptsa in different shapes. At first laptsa was a small loosely stacked stone stupa, later it was a beautiful chorten, a year later it was vandalized and today it was again a stone stacked stupa, but coloured and maintained. Sat for sometime enjoying the view before weather went dark, and started making some plans - we will hike till 2 PM wherever we reach from there we will return, all four of us agreed. 

Ashim Ching leaning on the Laptsa, 4084 meters 


Hike past Laptsa 4000 meters above the sea level

The trail from there was a gentle hike except for the pass at 4220 meters which slowed our pace further down with its thin air accompanied by rain and hail stone. It was 1 PM and everybody seemed hungry, ashim Ching Ching made a good decision to stop by if we came across any caves for lunch. Sangay spot one beneath the trail that could accommodate 3. Since he had an umbrella he sat outside facing 3 of us inside. It was quick but a scrumptious lunch in the hail stone. In 20 minutes we were back on the trail again, Came across a few lakes on the way and that kept us going instead of turning back after 2 PM as planned. 

Selfie in the cave, lunch time, heavy hail stone outside, 4200 meters
We missed tea on our lunch. We should not have drunk all 3 mini
flasks of tea at a go down below

Rain, hail stone and wind. It stopped altogether for sometime but rained again. In another hour of walking in the hail stone we reached the diversion leading to the great Dungtsho from Drukpath Trek route. Climbed up and down several times leaving behind Simkotra Tsho and mountains turning white with hail stones, and destination seemed just behind a mountain that was behind another 2 or 3 mountains. On two occasions ashim Ching Ching nearly gave up, not because she could not walk but she had a severe headache. And she only thought it was because of the mountain thin air. To add on she was wearing a kira. Sonam Dolma was the motivator rooting Ching Ching, Sangay the lamtenpa or the  guide cum front runner and I swept. "An exemplary display of a team spirit," I thought to myself deep inside. 


Ashim Ching wanted to sit here and wait for us, but Dolma rooted
 her to take a step at a time

Again came on more rain, hail stone and wind. Visibility became poor plus trail flooded with rain water. It was all muddy and splashing. Our hike supposed to be an easy one was becoming harder than the treks we did in the past. Yet, our determination as strong as steel and love for mountains un-wavered. Our lamtenpa who was ahead of us went out of our sight, down the other way 3 of us went and came across a lake which later I knew it was called Dungtsho Shama meaning Lower Dungtsho. Took a few photos and 10 minutes later we reached the great Dungtsho after walking for 3 hours in the rain, hail stone and heavy wind. All 3 of us were, "Yayyyyayy, we made it!!!!"  


Dungtsho Shama, 10 minutes short to Dungtsho

Our front runner was there already offering some prayers just then heavy dark clouds started clearing up and showed us the revered lake. Many times people dont get to see the lake, it will be covered with thick fog in  the heavy rain.  We were lucky, may be she knew we were coming from a far. I was so emotional deep within and the rain saved me from revealing it on my eyes. I heard of this revered lake some 20 plus years ago when my elder brothers would talk of and bring us some water from the tsho. My late mother would preserve and treat it with high regard. Since then I have longed to come and pay my respect, but never did I realise it would be after two decades that I could actually make it. 

Selfie at the Great Dungtsho, 4200 meters

Without wasting much time we headed back. This time nothing could stop us from picking up our pace. Walked like highlanders in their land in the interest of time and distance. Less worried we were this time, since we knew where we were heading. Kept on picking up the pace. Once in a while we would laugh at nothing, and again continue walking silently focusing on the trail cent percent. Seldom did we look back, every time we looked back smiles cut our faces in two halves with the sense of accomplishment while the length started to numb our legs. Walked past our lunch cave, also crossed  the highest pass, crossed the lengthy stretch of sky burial, finally at 5.30 PM Laptsa greeted us with fluttering prayer flags. Sangay video called his girl showing Thimphu valley far below tempting her, while 3 of us teased them. 


Thimphu valley far bellow

At laptsa we sat for  5 minutes after walking for 2 and a half hours in the hail stone. "Not bad, 5 hours hike to Dungtsho and we covered in just 3," ashim Ching Ching smiled, "and return it was estimated 3 hours, but us we did it in 2 and a half hours," Dolma was high spirited. I sipped chilled water, it hurt my throat as though swallowing a bottle of sharp icicles. Ran down to Phajoding like horses firstly to keep up the reputation of #TREKKERS360degree and secondly to get through to our base before night engulfed us. Dusk was already in the air. Ashim Ching Ching then realised her headache was from sniffing the wild flowers. In mountains it is always no to sniffing flowers. 

Yea, at the laptsa 4084 meters
Ashim Ching can be really camera shy sometimes :D

At the gate of Phajoding 3650 meters
The lamtenpa and motivator 

Of all some how coming down from Laptsa proved to be the toughest, which otherwise supposed to be a mild descent. The route was all muddy and slippery, and yes, Mr. Druk Air was the protagonist throughout. Just like anyone of us think Phajoding hike to be the easiest  of all the hikes in the country, most of the people go up unprepared. We were no exceptional too. Ashim Ching ching was in kira, lucky she wore trekking boots, and Sangay he was in sports shoes. Gosh, he had the toughest time. I was counting and he slipped 50 times starting from laptsa to the base, as Dolma said, "He would never let his butt hit the muddy ground." Sangay maintained his balance except on 3 occasions. At one point Mr. DrukAir laughed with pain in the butt, "How I wish this umbrella to be DrukAir. I would fly straight down!" He was carrying a DrukAir umbrella. 

At 6.30 PM we completed almost 70% of the trail, but for the remaining 30% we had to put on cell phone torches and walk very slowly for night engulfed us completely. That last portion took more than the walk from laptsa to this point. And it was hard plus more fun too, watching Mr. DrukAir slip every fifteen steps he took, "Alwai, dha, hahaha," we heard continues service. A few steps down and he slipped again, "Zai, Phajoding hike was supposed to an easy one, but my every next  hike or trek is getting tougher and tougher, hahaha!"

Finally at 7.25 PM, to our relieve the sign board at the starting point reflected our cell phones light. "Yayyyyay, at last!!" We cheered in chorus. But, sadly there was a huge U-Turn and that put off ashim Ching Ching, "Now, even if I slip as long as it will reach me down, I dont mind!" All of us laughed out loud, "Hahahaha" 7.30 PM and at the base we were, "Goodness, whoever said Dungtsho trek is an easy one might have never done it from Thimphu. She/he might have done in two days." We rated it was one of the hardest and toughest hike given the distance from Thimphu.  At the end of the day, what we expected to be an easy one-day hike turned out to be the toughest. In total 13 hours hike straight with nothing more than an hour rest on the whole hike. It was indeed a toughest hike so far and a real endurance test. We endured. We conquered. We smiled and smiled again.  

Hotstone bath for an hour post enduring hike, gave us the soundest of sleep that Sunday night.

Well, try getting up at 5 AM on Sunday and start hitting the mountains. You will run out of breath. Legs would start feeling like going numb. Destination appears like it is just behind that mountain which is hind another 3 to 4 mountains. It will rail, hail, you will shiver; slip and fall.But, when Monday comes and say hello to Tuesday, your heart will be filled with millions of memories worth cherishing for the rest of your life.

Try for yourself once, make some plans this weekends and hit the mountains. It might lift your spirit and help you in embracing the entire week with a smile be it good or bad. 

My friends #TREKKERS360 and I #TREKKERS360degreeian made yet another zillions terebytes of memories!!!!


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Humanity is my Religion

Even if I were a Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Taoist, Muslim, Confucian, Jain, Sikh, Judaist, Zoroastrian, Paganist, Shintoist, Jewish, Wicca, Druidist, Baha i, Mon, Atheist, Non believer or one follower amongst 4200 other religions in the world; I would still be a believer, follower and lover of humanity.

Humanity would still be my religion, for the latter one was created later and always for the betterment of humanity.


Live and let live.

Smile and let smile.


Symbol of Humanity
Pic : Google






















Tuesday, May 2, 2017

An Art Exhibition by TWINZ (Local Artists)

With talented twin brothers, and they call themselves TWINZ


An art Exhibition by Twin brothers Ugyen and Tashi will be happening from 4th May till 14th May 2017 at #vastbhutan Thimphu. . All the folks are welcome, you either get inspired or show some love and Support local arts and artists!!!!


Monday, April 24, 2017

Mid night Prayer - Sleeping amongst the stardust

Through what one might have not to tread,
All for a sound sleep at the end of the day.

Blessed you are, if with an ease twinkle amongst the stars.
Floating in the clouds beneath you see your home.

A ' many ' day's toil rob the beauty of the moon, 
Soul moan deep into the cold night, tug of war all within you.

At the dawn you were shivering in the toils of yesterdays. 
An icy blade of uncertainty struck in the heart.

About the first rays of the sun,
you are sleeping amongst the stardust.

Be gentle and kind to the universe and yourself alike. 
You deserve it too. 

Oh, my, oh, love yourself and learn to smile too. 
It's not time that is less , but you and I.


Keep smiling. . Life's just beautiful


Stardust
Pic from Google

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Highly Qualified Brain. Highly forsaken Heart

I wonder midst learned people, highly qualified and extremely intellectual. Bring a topic and you are knocked out in the first round. Argument as sharp as samurai's sword, debate as hard as steel, you are no match.

But, sadly creates more rifts in a firm wall, then filling the gaps or addressing the loop holes. How I wish they make use of the power of heart too.

I wonder midst learned people!!!!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Morning prayer

Waking up early in the morning, throwing unbiased relaxed casual glances through agape worn out window, curtains often tempting the sight, and morning rain chilled brie kissing my weary eye cups, caresses for just a decisecond and bids farewell. My soul simply wonders if morning rain chilled brie ever wondered how had I been through the whole night? In another decisecond, my heart consoles, "It is the very way of life you are just being naive, be grateful you woke up to be kissed by the zephyr."

Live on and let live, life's a miracle!!


OM written on the sacred lake Nubtshonapata,
completely frozen in Feb 2017, at 4130 meters above the sea level.

OM a mystic syllable, considered the most sacred mantra
 in Hinduism and Tibetan Buddhism. It appears at the beginning and end of
 most Sanskrit recitations, prayers, and texts

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Support for ANA by KARMA (Empowering women and promoting Bhutanese Weavers)

ANA by KARMA is a venture that helps in fulfilling Bhutanese weavers' dream to step up as small business, using their own talent and creativity in the heritage art of weaving. Weavers, who are mostly women, villagers, illiterate and struggling to make ends meet without a proper job; weave scarves and sell them worldwide with the help of Quin Thong ( https://www.linkedin.com/in/quinsq?trk=hp-identity-name ), an accountant from Hongkong, who also came up with an idea and founded ANA by KARMA. The decent money they earn through weaving and selling scarves, it helps in supporting their family, and to start also small home based business.
ANA by KARMA is currently applying for a grant from FedEx Small Business Grant Contest Hongkong SAR, where Top-10 Shortlisting for the grant will be done based on the highest numbers of votes acquired through Facebook.
Therefore, kindly follow the link http://hk.smallbusinessgrant.fedex.com/home/detail/4f0c1a4f-0243-4cde-9a65-815f6d6ae5f0#/gallery/detail/4f0c1a4f-0243-4cde-9a65-815f6d6ae5f0  to vote and show your support. Please share the link with people around the world. Your vote and support empowers women in the country!
After voting once you can re-vote after 24 hours. The voting is on from 16th March to 3rd May 2017.

Thanking you for your support!
An ANA readying to weave a scarf
Photo courtesy : ANA by KARMA Facebook page
Ocean Blue Scarf
Photo courtesy : ANA by KARMA Facebook page

Symbolism

There is a reason why we always use a tall
standing mannequin to represent ANA by KARMA as a visual brand image.
At fairs. At retail shops. All our Bhutanese weavers stand tall,
proud to showcase their rainbow colour weavings
 - testimony of their talent in heritage weaving.
We are not looking for free handouts, we do not request for donations,
we want to stand tall and earn our own.
 — Quin Sq
Photo courtesy : ANA by KARMA Facebook page

A model trying out ANA by KARMA's scarf
Photo courtesy : ANA by KARMA Facebook page

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Song of the moon

It has been a while since I last saw the moon from my window.
Oh, forgot I. It is already into last phase of the lunar cycle.

Wherever thou art, be safe, keep smiling and see you on the waxing crescent. 
For now I bid ya sweetest slumber.

An ode to my SONY VAIO laptop

I and my Laptop have got a very achey breaky relationship. Just 2 months ago as I was writing a long blog it broke on me. I was so upset. After much hurdle and hassle I brought her back to life. I was so happy.

Just now, after two months of her rebirth; amid a long blog post, a photo frame hung high on the wall falls off and shatters her LCD. Oh, my Oh, how did I not see it coming? How did I not safe guard her from disaster? Oh, how can I not believe what the frame has done to you? What is going to happen of you? Oh my dear, I know not.

My dear Laptop, I will try my best to bring you back to life yet again. I will do everything I can. I am not giving up on you, for you have been so amazing with me day in day out. How can I let you be in pain? How can I turn a blind eye to you? You have been one of my favorite companions so far. I will try my best my dear, and dont you give up on me just too soon.

Yet, if everything is out of our hands and nothing can be done. My dear Laptop, my darling, with pain and ache deep inside, I will let you rest in peace. Please don't try to hold back if you really can't, it is simply going to hurt you throughout your life. It is going to drain you out. It is going to choke you and that will hurt me as well. Plus leave me guilty. For me you will never be an obsolete but someone who passes away in an old age. I will always remember you as one of my best friends. I will tell tales of you to others. And also of how everything comes to an end.

Now breath slowly my dear and be gentle, until the doctors sees you. Let's be positive and keep smiling for now..

My darling : Broken LCD

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Magic in the yonder days

Every soul must pass through this gate called, "An old Age" except some either don't make it unfortunately or boycott. It needs some kind of guts, discipline and positive attitude to grow old, I guess. And, I too wonder like you are wondering alike every soul would wonder of tomorrow, to the point wherein this wondering would orient the way one lives today and gives soul a hope that, "There is magic in the yonder days."

When you get there you realise the distance ain't that long and the time ain't that slow. Live your life happily every moment as though it could be the end, and when it is near ending live as if it is at the threshold of beginning.

Life is it too short to frown over dark yesterdays and anticipate too much for known tomorrow, for it might dishearten you when it go bitter unexpectedly. 

Be positive, and keep smiling. Life's just beautiful.


My father, my inspiration who survived cancer last year is just learning the art
of Photography with a borrowed camera from my friend.
It is never too old to learn new things!

































Friday, February 3, 2017

Refresher Course



The tall, the huge and the tiniest. .lol.� � .. With my eldest brother a lama and my good Americano friend Tim Huang :D :D .

It's always nice to spend some time with your elders and re-orientate ones unguided or mis-guided thoughts and action. For, over the time one tend to either get over carried away or over whelmed with the tantrums and humdrums of this long journey... Re-fresher course or re-orientation is always better, so long one wishes to grow in life!!!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Foreign Languages: I speak 5 different languages

 If you have some problems with people speaking in English, then you might as well have problems with toddlers speaking in Hindi even before they can say: ཀ་ ཁ་ ག་ ང་།

Actually, if you really look at it is a blessing in disguise, besides being an extra knowledge to be able to understand or speak in some foreign languages. It aids you in understanding others better not only of their personality, but also her/his culture, tradition and history. It not only offers you with various options into learning new things with greater resources at your disposal, you can at any time dive into the ocean of their literature and art, and quench your thirst of seeking knowledge. You can explore everything as easy as eating a cake. If you can speak/understand/read/write in their language, then you can relate to her/him, and their community and country so effortlessly. Understanding culture and tradition of the place helps you in treating them better, so they will treat you best. Respect and value to one another comes just like that. Of all, with greater resources of knowledge at your disposal it aids you in opening your inner and outer eyes. Your conscience becomes clear.

Learning or knowing other or foreign languages always comes in handy especially when you go around place to place. You can not only convey the message directly into their heart, you actually can feel and share the very thoughts and ideas they possess, easily. Which otherwise 20% of the whole conversation is lost in the translation and meaning distorted.

Besides, there is no harm in speaking either in English or Hindi or French or whatever, whenever and wherever as and when one wishes to, apart from official bouts; so long one value and pay equal respect to one’s own age old culture and tradition, passed down form generations to generations. 
And yes, it also creates jobs and helps in easing unemployment problems in the country, which goes almost above 3%. It brings home huge sum of money via tourism that in some ways boost the economy of the country.

If you really have a problem and wishes to find an answer, then perhaps it's time you start digging out the actual source of influences coming in and sieve those, before it touches young souls without educating them on the good and the bad of it. We have got numerous foreign language institutes in the town, if not for fore mentioned advantages, why spent so much hard earned money of yours into leaning those languages? 

Oh, I speak five different languages and a few local dialects of the country!







Sunday, January 29, 2017

Unobserved subtle habit and its vulnerability

If you truly love your mother, you will, then love and respect all women. But, if you treat your mother nothing more than an ATM or a scolding parrot. Then you are, most likely, going to treat any women, nothing more than some commodities.

I feel deep inside, the root cause of all sorts of mistreatments against women, is this subtle unobserved or unattended attitude; that we overlook and later becomes a chronic social disease.

We can prevent the disease at home, if observed from day one!!!!




Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Letter to Thimphu Chhu and Ola-rong Chhu

Dear serene madams Thimphu Chhu and Ola-rong Chhu,

I am writing this letter on behalf of the people of Thimphu to say we are so sorry. I know you two are deeply hurt inside lately. Serene Thimphu river you flow through the heart of Thimphu city and perennial Ola-rong river flowing form the other side who joins you near Pelkhil School, must be sobbing deep inside, looking at our inability to make optimal use of you two and bestow ourselves with 24 hours service of clean drinking water. You two might have sobbed last week the hardest seeing helpless inhabitants in Thimphu city living without water for the entire week. Madam Thimphu Chhu and Ola-rong Chhu, I know how much you two have had pitied souls thriving especially in Changbangdu, Olakha and Babesa. There was no water for almost 9 days and it was not your fault at all, but ours solely.



Madam Thimphu Chhu and Ola-rong Chhu please dont get us wrong, our city is still in the growing stage and we dont have adequate fund. We are doing everything in our capacity to appease you two and make optimal use too. I really mean it madams, I have seen and heard too, how much everyone is toiling day in day out to avail the treasure you have for us.

Let me enlighten you madams Thimphu river and Ola-rong Chhu of our tentative plans as to how we will avail your treasure, as soon as we generate or get some funds. We will drill some holes on your banks, install some pumps, and connect them with pipelines which will lead your treasure into huge water treatment tanks for treatment. But please don’t mind la, when I say, “Treatment” I don’t mean you are contaminated; it is just to get rid of not so-useful-minerals. After treating we will connect every house hold with clean drinking water, which will flow 24 hours.

That’s our tentative plan la, however problem still exists, we don’t know how soon we can manage to generate our own fund or get some funds from other sources. It could be like one or two or even three decades. But, we will keep working very hard la, so we can make your dream a real one to make optimal use of your generosity and bestow every household in and around city with 24 hours running clean drinking water supply. I must also admit now only la, dear Thimphu Chhu and Ola-rong Chhu, that we cannot promise any sooner, but we will try our best.

Until then we have strong faith in you two la, please don’t plan on leaving us too soon in the name of climate change, nor dry upon us saying your glacial reserve is running low. If at all you do, before we fulfill your dreams, then we can never forgive ourselves la. We are extremely sorry for our incapability as of now.

Till then; please don’t mind fishes and frogs making babies in you la. They are just living their lives.

Peace


Yours Faithfully,

Che,
Thimphu City,
Bhutan


Thimphu River flowing in the heart of Thimphu City