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Picnic at Samtegang

We planned a picnic last year and never happened. One thing or another always kept missing and it just couldn’t fall into place. But this time, we really meant to make it and make it we did.

We gathered at office at 10:30am on 26th April. I thought L and I would be the first ones but there were people who were more excited than we were. Already most of them were waiting. When we divided the group to go into different cars, we were with a different group. But in the last minute, we found we had to adjust. So we jumped in with Sangay Thinley. He started driving only a week back and my thought the day we discussed about picnic was not to go in his car. But so much for my fear when it manifested – jumped in his car and we sped before others did. So much laughter filled the car and we were a little jumpy. I guess our hearts couldn’t just rest peacefully in their case.

We stopped a while at Hongtsho and bought Singara and Appy. Then we had no time to look back. We were at Dochula – the beautiful pass adorned with 108 chortens.


There we took pictures in the chill. We were tourists in our own country. But it was fun you know to just smile and stand for the camera.

Sangay Thinley is one person who can keep talking and go on munching Doma. Thrillingly we drove till Lobesa. He has something to say for everything. Even when someone from the back honks, he would comment something so funny that we would end up laughing. Laughter wasn’t soft and slow. It was outburst and fast. He was lucky, we didn’t blast his car.

Tshoki and Me with Sangay Thinley

For a reason I don’t want to disclose here, we went via Punakha. We stopped for a few minutes at Ugyen Academy and met his brother. We had nothing except three packets of Mayos for his brother.

We reached Samtegang at around six pm. A colleague’s car broke down three times up the rough road. But we finally did reach the picnic spot. Our organizer was already waiting there.

The lake isn’t so beautiful now but it has traces of its beauty in around it. Someone said its beauty was spoiled by the construction of school near it. There is a beautiful school near it but there seem to have no water in the school. You see students rushing up towards the village – maybe there is a stream there, carrying buckets and clothes to wash.

That night, we had dinner, danced around the fire and sang songs. Our friends drank and had good laugh. But I had headache and I had to resign early to bed. Soon after, my girl friends followed. But guys lingered longer around the fire and we heard them swearing after every syllable they spoke. I guess, they thought they didn’t have enough fun. So in the search for fun a car was broke down. But no one had any big hurt.

The two great talkers

Guys dancing

The next day, our guys played cards and we took a walk along the lake. We took pictures in the calmness of nature. There was nothing to disturb us except our breath. We sat in the meadow and let our thoughts sink in peacefully. We had a good time dreaming of the dreams that we don’t get to dream in town. We didn’t talk of marriage and divorces. Politics wasn’t a woman’s subject. So we dwelled on talking less and dreaming more. It was even romantic to sit on the top of a mountain overlooking many valleys. It was as if we were unearthly. It was as if we could just close our eyes and think of someone we loved and would have him right in our heart. It was as if we could just make a wish and we would have it.

Two of our friends joined us on Sunday morning. I think they didn’t find it appealing to their idea. So they were little upset with the whole setting of the picnic. They had lunch, and left before others. It made us feel bad but what could we do? We enjoyed in our own ways. We didn’t interact much. We didn’t dance the next day. We didn’t drink either. But we did a lot of things we don’t get to do in town. We sat in the woods and let the sun rays sink deep in our body.

After a very sumptuous lunch, we departed home. And back in the car, we had the laughter of the life. We could have banged our heads on the car-windows if we didn’t want to listen to his talks but it was really so infectious that we couldn’t just not listen. We had a good debate about marriage and how responsible we have to be once we are married.

And when L met her boyfriend at Simtokha and left, it seemed liked we left half the fun there. We took home quietly and that was the day. There was no crickets to cry the end of the day but we reached home and I was happy there was a home I could so warmly tug up in. It was a good day indeed.

The whole picnic group

The Girls

The Lake

L and I - it was before we started dreaming...


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