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A Bhutanese Awakening

tigers nest monastery bhutan

Fluttering like the wings of the majestic dragon upon it, the fiery tones of the Bhutanese flag projects against the crispy clear blue November sky. In its wavy shadow a male dressed in the traditional Gho retouches the intricately painted wall tapestries at the entrance of the grand Tashichho dzong monastery in medieval metropolis of […]

Bhutan’s Seasons of Change

bhutan

I arrived in the painful, bitter cold of winter. It was far below freezing! It was the first day of snowfall of the year and school was cancelled. I walked my little Bhutanese students’ home as we shielded our wind-burned cheeks against the stinging frost. However, my layers upon layers of clothes couldn’t stop the […]

Bhutan: Nuns Secrets to Life

bhutan

“Om Mani Padme Hum, Om Mani Padme Hum . . . (Hail to the lotus one!).” For several months, every morning I blissfully woke up to the repeating hums passing outside my window; the beloved morning routine of a vibrant seventy-seven year old Buddhist nun circumambulating the nunnery with a prayer bead in her left […]

Bhutan: Trek to Taktsang Monastery

Bhutan

Trek to Taktsang monastery (Tiger’s nest) “The road in front of you, which has been trodden by the feet of millions of pilgrims like you, is excessively steep and incredibly rough; and you, whose lungs have never breathed air above sea level, who have never have climbed anything higher than the roof of your house, […]

Thimphu, Bhutan: National Memorial Chorten

Marianne and Bhutanese woman at National Memorial Chorten

Bhutan is a Buddhist country where religion is taken seriously,  one sees monasteries, temples, chortens, and prayer flags, across the country. The most ubiquitous of these are the chortens. Stone or earthen square structures, with proportions about twice as tall as wide, a sloped stone roof, the shape much like a cupola, as small as […]

Bhutan a Happier Place With Books

bhutan

Bhutan a Happier Place With Books (co-authored with Laura Hubber) When Claire Thomsen was 11, her parents pulled the rug out from her comfortable Malibu existence. They sold the family business, rented out the house, and spent the year roving the world, 27 countries in all, with Claire in tow. Instead of entering middle school […]

In Bhutan, Skateboarding is a Crime

Trongsa Dzong

In Bhutan, Skateboarding is a Crime Driving the other day we see 2 boys on a homemade skateboard, I remark to Dorji this is the first such one I’ve seen. Oh yes, he says, the government banned them a few years back, as hazardous, citing accidents involving skateboarders and cars.Also banned: tobacco and plastic bags. In […]

Return to Bhutan

John at Tiger's Nest Monastery

RETURN TO BHUTAN Yet again I find myself at the Drukair check in counter of Bangkok’s Suvarnhabumhi airport, at the unreasonable hour of 4:30 a.m. Twelve Bhutan bound clients make up my entourage. The usual grumpy Thai staff processes our bags and tickets and scrutinizes visas, not the best introduction for the happiest place on […]

Bhutan: Seduced By A Country

Chortens at Dochula

Bhutan: Seduced By A Country I’ll admit it’s unusual, but have you ever flirted with a country? Been tempted to toss everything and start over, by a sovereign nation? Felt weak in the knees, butterflies in the stomach and knew that you were smitten, all by a place and not another person? In my case, […]

Why SHOULD you TRAVEL?

Lee Abbamonte Beach

By Lee Abbamonte Travel opens your eyes and your mind to a whole new world. Travel enables you to see the world through other peoples eyes and from other points of view. Travel increases your awareness of other cultures and people. Travel makes you smarter. Travel is the best education you can receive. Travel enables […]