Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2009

The First Snowfall

31.12.09: My alarm just went off and I am thinking of getting up. But I want to linger in the warmth of the blanket for a while more. When it is 10 minutes to seven, the line phone rings. Who could it be early in the morning? It is Tashi. She wants to tell me that it is snowing outside. Ah, so in Bhutan now, snowfall has become kind of rare. We attribute this to climate change. We are increasingly becoming aware of the erratic weather conditions. I don’t know if it is the climate change that is affecting us. As much as I would like to think that it isn’t, I find myself believing it. Who is responsible?

This planet isn’t mine, or yours. It is ours. And so the responsibility is ours too, to keep this planet alive, as it was, fresh, young and green. But when we are consumed in the desire of making more of everything, we forget this. I wish each individual would see this truth and take it seriously.

As I write this, it is snowing outside. I am excited a bit too. I made a list of who I shoul…

Ohoooo…what a relief!!!

I just had no time to attend to the computer that was giving me problem. My nephew wanted to work on something, but I just had no time to see what was wrong with the computer. I told him that I will try to check it later. Later became two days. And finally, tonight when I reached home (10:00 p.m.), just like that, I turned on the computer. I wasn’t really putting my heart and soul into repairing this old computer that makes a sound like an old horse. But I thought, why not try. So my hands went there.

And just like an accident, suddenly, I remembered repairing my sister-in-law’s computer a month or so back. And it struck me. And there! It was a small work. I think sometime it is best to let things cool off and let our mind find solution at its own free pace. Sometime, because we need to find the solution so urgently, limited by time and pressed by responsibility, we stress ourselves so much to get the solution. But we just get nowhere. It is really important to just free our mind. The…

Nganpa Gu Zom (Meeting of the nine evils)

23rd December, 2009, Wednesday: Today was Nganpa Gu Zom, the meeting of the nine evils. Last evening, I had to work late at the office. The other night, Ama told me of her plan on the meeting of the nine evils day. She told me that she was to meet her friends at 10 a.m. at the Chorten. They were to meet with a beer bottle each and packed lunch. So inwardly made plan of preparing something special for her lunch. While I thought this inside myself, I thought I shared this plan with my husband.

While I was coming home in the evening, my cousin who is here these days from Tashiyangtse called me. He wanted to know if I was doing any shopping for that day. Then it suddenly struck me that I had not bought whatever was required for my plan. Having worked for hours without rest, I had already become too irritated. I swear, I could have hit my husband if he was near me (right, I had no right to. He had done no wrong. But we don’t need a reason sometime. I could just hit someone and I would have …

Was I inspired!!! National Day, 2009

17th December: It is a National Day. It was a holiday yesterday. I got an invitation card too. The Ministry of Home and Cultural Affairs send invitation cards to different offices on this day. But I couldn't really plan what I would do. Kinley asked me if we should go to the Changlingmethang, but I told her that we can discuss about it with other friends. But we didn't. The problem with our friends is that, they have to be called, they have to be reminded of the events and plans. I just feel like I have it full. So I am kind of telling myself that maybe I am overdoing it, almost forcing them to agree with what I plan. So I am giving up being a mother and giving them the choice to take over.

I cleaned my room instead. I have got cough because of that. I cleaned every small corner of my bedroom and made a new arrangement (this is one work I do with enthusiasm almost every week). Then I watched the celebration of the National Day at the Changlingmethang on TV. Unlike other days, I…

What am I thinking?

For the many years that I have lived listening to the good teachings, I wonder if it is even rightful to think what I'm thinking now. Am I angry? I don't know. I wonder at how people can take you so foolishly.

Don't we often forget to look at ourselves and judge others? Don't we often ask questions to others before asking them to ourselves? Don't we often forget that people are all same, basically?

I will not argue more. I know if there are any readers at all, reading this blog of mine, I will only confuse them. But at this moment, I have nowhere to shed this emotion but here. I so darn want to hit someone. Not because I am so angry. Because, I would really want to crack open someone's brain to really understand his thought.

Even when I lose everything, I know I will not lose my interest to write. Even if I don't write so well like others, I know I will write, even if it is nothing important.

For sure I will have to sleep tonight with wanting to hit someone…

A Mother's Worry

My sister calls me up from Bikhar. She wants to know how her son, my nephew who is staying with me is doing his exam. She says that she let a fortune teller read how he would do his exam only to find that he would have difficulty getting into a college. I tell her not to worry; that it cannot always be right. But of course, I know I cannot convince her enough to drop her worry.

She calls up often to see how he has done his exam. I find myself consumed in empathy. I pity her as well. I pity all fathers and mothers. As much as I want to admit that I’m sick of people’s excuses of hoarding wealth in the name of their sons and daughters, I feel so sorry for them. I feel sorry because, they seem to think that if they don’t make everything ready, from giving education to building a house, to getting ready a wife/husband, their sons and daughters aren’t capable of getting them done themselves.

My sister’s constant call and worry makes me wonder if my nephew is worried half as much as his mother…

Thank you Acho

I grew up in a farm. When I say farm, it is not as in the context of a farm in the developed western countries. Bhutan is a small country, landlocked between India and China. More than 70% of our people depend on agriculture -- the subsistence farming.

I was born into a couple who made their living from subsistence farming. I was born as the youngest of the seven children. My elder brothers and sisters had to go through hardship: helping our father cut wood, get firewood, sell fruits, etc. But I being the youngest didn't have to go through all this hardship they did.

My eldest brother, who did not get to go to school, saw education as a very important tool to live in the world that was changing fast. My second elder brother did not get to go to school either. But both of them looked for opportunities to learn to read and write and thus, on their own interest and effort, they did learn to read and write. And then one day, my eldest brother helped him run away from home to the capita…

We only hear of conferences being held in other countries…

I presented on the progress we have made in the field of GNH and a person speaks up saying that as an outsider, they hear only of international conferences being held. He says that this gives people a notion that Bhutan is concentrating more on reaching the information on GNH to outsiders forgetting to disseminate these same information to our very own people. He cited the article published recently in Kuensel where the writer said that while we are organizing so many conferences outside, we have not held a single zomdue on GNH in our villages.  I will not try to argue but simply put a clarification.
For every one international conference, we have 10 domestic workshops. But for reason unknown, Bhutanese show little interest. When there are workshops in Bhutan, they don’t hear about it, but they perk up their ears and become very attentive when they hear of international conferences being held.  For the simple reason that the people all over the world have now realized what barren and …

Dear Amku…

I call my mother ‘Amku.’ I don’t know how I came to call her that but I find joy in calling her so. I usually smile as I call her, ‘Amku’ in the long tone. She looks at me and laughs. In that laughter she holds me enchanted. That laughter is pure; there is no trace of malice, no trace of insincerity. I feel like breaking down, just because in that instant of joy, I feel the stab of pain of losing her. Few days back, I was telling her that if she had been sent to school, she would be a Dasho now. And I was serious. I know she would be. But that is not what I wish. I am so happy she and my father raised me up, implanting in me values as they sowed seed in the field. If there is a reason for me to wish she were sent to school, it would be to let her know how I would write to her my feelings in a letter:

Amku, no words will be able to tell you how much I love you. For the numerous reasons you must have been born as my mother, I wish I could just take these reasons now in a bag and store th…

I’m enjoying being mocked at

I call my husband. I sometime curse myself for being blunt. I have to bear the brunt of bluntness so often that I curse myself to death sometime. I call my husband, not even giving a second thought that probably he is enjoying somewhere with his friends and in that jurisdiction, my voice isn’t something that is welcomed.

I talk to him and I hear cacophony of woman like voices mocking at me. I can make out that they are laughing at my back. Do I enjoy that? I wish I could say yes. But unfortunately, no, I don’t enjoy that. So I demand my husband to tell me who that person is….oh there comes my miss call. So I gotta go.

Kinley’s mother has sent me cheese from her village. So kind of her. And there, ah, like a swift cool breeze in the sticky summer night, I got a bit of my hefty feelings out. She asks, “Gunda gi chhim gati mo?” I give her the location and then ask her why she wants to know. She replies, “Gunda gi chhi na tas tseyde lo sey.” Oh okay, so that is the reason for the gatherin…

Now and 16 years back

My mother learned to read Dzongkha when she had to stay home taking rest after the surgery. She can now read prayers but she would be more fluent if she had better eye sight. For a week she went to Jungshina community lhakhang to pray. There, the lama presiding the community prayer has given a prayer book each to everyone present. This evening when I got home, my mother wanted to read that prayer book. I sat beside her and helped her with words she had difficulty pronouncing.

And then, right after dinner, she chanted the “Dechen Moelam.” When prayed in the long melodious tune, it can tear your heart apart and send you right next to your lama and make you feel that you really do not need anything at all in this world. I did the dishes, cleaned the kitchen and sat by her side again while she was doing that moelam. Then, I told her, “Ama nga cha po, Aema ho chi tangma nyampu” (meaning: Let us pray together the Aema ho moenlam before we sleep), and we did.

As our voices blended and felt a…

It seems to work

I said, I will now work harder, concentrate appropriately and thus bundle myself together with people who are called 'good hardworking people.' And it seems to work. Maybe it is only for today but I'm glad even if it is just for a day.

Though the weather is very gloomy and we have seen the first winter rain, I seem to embrace the mood of working harder even as the cold seeps in my bones. For some reason, I do not have a heater in my room. Tshoki and I seem to have made a sacrifice somewhere for this. I don't mind; I am wearing a thick muffler and I got a shawl wrapped around my thighs. But that is not part of what I want to say.

I feel so happy now despite the sickness I had in the morning. Dizziness tucked me in bed until 9:15 a.m. But now there is no trace of sickness.

I feel like the first flower blooming as the Spring season sets in. Or better yet, I feel like the flower that blooms even in winter.

And not to say, I might turn back into indetermination, for today, …

If I were to define my life now...

If I were to define my life now, it would begin without a single achievement.

If  I were to define my life now, it would just be a single blank page.

If I were to define my life now, it would be just a starry dumb pair of eyes.

If I were to define my life now, it would just be a butterfly-pupa who never knew of the beauty of having wings.

If I were to define my life now, it would just be an orphan who never knew what it was like to have a mother.

If I were to define my life now, it would just be a drunk without destination.

If I were to define my life now, it would just be a hollow space without life.

If I were to define my life now, it would just be a pair of unstable, shaky feet.

And with all this, if I were to look for a future now, it would just be a blank paper without a pen to write anything on it.

Author's note: This is written in the mood of self discrimination and it shouldn't give the idea that I do not value the many good friends I have in my life; and the people …

And so I change

Something is terribly going wrong somewhere. I'm not doing something right. Am I not committing myself enough for what I should? Am I not following the thumb rule of how life should be lived?

What is going wrong and where? I wish I knew this. Then I would know what exactly I must do and how.

I think I have taken things for granted for so long. I think I have depended on faith so heavily for my entire life. I think it is time I found a better way to look for meaning in life. I think it is time I knew where I should begin. And it is time, I knew what I want. Even when I have my love next to me, hugging me, and telling me, 'it is okay,' I know, it isn't totally all right. It is time I got serious.

And with this, I change. And with this I will fight stronger than I ever willed.


You can't demand people to be what they are not

The title as you see is just to console myself that I cannot expect people to be what they are not, just so it will please me. I cannot hope people will change just because that will be convenient to me. And I cannot hope people were different, just as I would make them, if I were the architect, just so they will merge completely with my thoughts.

But even when you know all that, sometime it is hard to take that some people's nature can be repeated in the same pattern of irritating ripples. Not that pleasing tease, but that uncomfortable eerie feeling like snake walking on your feet.

Whatever it is, I know just as I would like to remain myself, they would want to be what they are. I cannot snatch that right from anyone but I'm becoming a little sick of being the understanding person of 'Oh that is fine," nature. the world goes on, so would my life. And just as everyone, I would forget this discomfort. But I can only wish it would come soon.

Child Poverty

The meeting on child poverty takes place in a five star hotel. What an irony, a senior officer says. 
Another senior officer has been flying out so often (visiting other countries on official purposes) that he gets free ticket as a compliment. What an irony, I would say, because I would like to ask if that is a way to work efficiently.
And for this child poverty meeting, there are more than 50 items of dishes laid out on the table. There are four long tables of dishes. And I can bet there is not a single person who isn't wasting it. Each one brings several items and they leave wasted, because they don't like it. 
Outside in the street, a barely 10 year old girl, carrying a baby, scooped in her right arm, comes begging. "Give me 500 bucks, I'm really, really hungry." She has a shrill strong voice. But the fact remains that she is begging. 
Now, I'm wondering, how effective holding such meetings are. The large part of the budget of poverty alleviation program is go…

The Second love

I have loved before. I have been married before too. And I was happy once upon a time. That must have been a year back. Or maybe, it was only yesterday. To me, it seems like it was only yesterday; like I have never really been apart from him.
I was hurt again today. In love. And that is when I realized that I have felt this pain before. It was then that I knew, I left love in the hope of abandoning pain; in the hope of running away from selfish feelings; in the hope of fighting attachment. And yet, I was in the same pit of feelings, same pit of emotions and now again, I look at those innocent drugged eyes of seduction and can’t help deny this want swell in me.
I didn’t plan this. I know neither did he. But it is as if my destiny was always here. It is as if I have forever been floating on the surface of a river, watching the tide to catch me. It is as if we have always been together, weaving love.
And now, paralyzed in the emotion which is so familiar, I can’t walk away when I feel his b…

And Yet

You are not who I thought I will love
You are not who I thought I will cry for
And yet, you make me want to cry

I want to stop dead and not talk
I want to shut my eyes close and not look
And yet, I see your face everywhere

Or what is there to care?
Let me cry until tears run dry
Let me look for you until you are really here…
Even if I don’t know if you would really be there

//Author’s note: In the mood of wanting to cry. The experience of heart wrenching open, blood-oozing pain and the undeniable emotions of blinding madness.

The Addict that I am

It is when I’m sitting with my friends talking that I suddenly think of my pending works. Or it is when I’m about to fall into a good slumber that I think of them. Then I tell myself, “Tomorrow, I will work. Tomorrow, I will ignore my friends even if they ask me how I’m doing.” But the next day I’m in the office, it is the same.

As soon as I log in on my gmail account, I see my friends. Luzee is one person I talk to, no matter how busy I am. And we always have endless things to talk about. So 10 minutes mean an hour. For that reason, I stay invisible most of the time, but like Luzee, if there is anyone who I prefer talking to, I end up wasting the whole day and then, my works remain pending. And so I have to keep trusting my last minute tips of working till bones give way.

Even today, I was determined that I will finish that one work which has been gnawing on me for a few weeks. But Luzee says, ‘oooi’ and there goes one hour of my time. Then comes another person, this person I have cho…