Thursday, July 31st, 2014 - 1:22 PM

The tale of two tattoos

LAST PAGE Each tattoo is a unique experience.  I have two – well, one and a half, to be precise.  The first was an endurance test I passed, but the second one got the best of me.  It’s yet to be completes. It will be, one day.

Having chosen my inner thigh as the spot for the second tattoo was a decision that turned out to be painful, not a mistake though.  Although it [... Read More]

Of diapers, dinners, devotion and daddies


COVER STORY It took a week for any concerns about the impact of disposable diapers on the pristine environment to be junked.

Dishes needed to be washed, guests to be entertained, groceries bought, the living room cleaned up, and a overflowing laundry basket of dirty chutey or reusable cloth diapers hand washed, again.  Oh right, and your measly five days of paternity leave just ended, like yesterday.

As you dump a trashcan full of disposable [... Read More]

To be a father

fatherUgyen Thrinley with his family

Perspective of a man living in a rural village in Trashigang 

RURAL Nervousness gripped twenty-seven-yer-old Ugyen Thrinley from Bidung, Trashigang when he first heard that his wife, Yangjay, 26, was pregnant with their first child.

“Being a first-timer my wife’s pregnancy really made me nervous,” Ugyen Thrinley said. He would be worried about what kinds of food his wife should eat or avoid for the health of both mother and child.

“I was so worried I [... Read More]

Purpose of budget discussions

LETS MAKE IT SIMPLE Budget, by the sound of it, we all know how important it is.

In our everyday lives, budget, an estimate of what we earn and how we spend that for a set period of time, determines our lifestyles.

That is why families are often seen, every day, week, month or year prioritising needs and slashing budget when it gets tight.

Similarly, budget is the most important economic policy tool of a government [... Read More]

The birthing assistants

birthThe birthing centre decorated to celebrate Nurses’s Day (File photo)

 MIDWIVES Singye, 34, was overwhelmed to see his wife in labour.  Out of sheer nervousness, he was at a loss and did not know what to do.  The nurses on duty, adorned in their baby pink scrubs, were calm and composed.

“They treated the women like they were relatives,” Singye said of the midwives at the birthing centre at Thimphu referral hospital. “I was relieved to have their help.”

As part of their work, the [... Read More]

Archery and fitness: Can the twain meet?

HEALTH AND FITNESS I’ve been playing archery for over six years and I’m wondering if it’s benefiting my overall health and physical fitness.  Is playing archery enough, or do I have to do other exercises?  I try to make a point to play at least once or twice a week.
Sonam Dorji, Thimphu

Hi Sonam
With due respect to archery, which is our national sport, the truth still remains that it’s poor when it comes [... Read More]

The cursed couple

DRUKPA KUNLEY We move north now, to the valley of the Pho River. Like so many other parts of Bhutan, this is a mystically handsome place. You can sense Drukpa Kunley in the geography.

At the beginning of his time in the Pho Chu Valley, DK met a couple on the trail. He opened with his usual question. Do you have any booze, he asked.

It turns out that they had quite a lot. They [... Read More]

When the wheel (of parenthood) starts turning

LAST PAGE Details of the day my son was born are fresh in my mind.  Memories are lucid.  Although the credit lies exclusively with my wife, I felt I accomplished a Herculean task when the tiny boy wrestled out.

It was his first scream, which encrypted a permanent and an amazing feeling in my heart.  It gave me the identity of a father.  The moment bestowed on me happiness immeasurable, and one that could [... Read More]

The can-do monks of Gangtey


Apart from the usual studies, they build their own classrooms, lhakhangs and hostels

COVER STORY Men in red robes  framing timber components, carrying stones and painting structures at a construction site not only confuse tourists but local visitors to Gangtey goenpa shedra (monastic institute) as well.

Monks are expected to be disconnected from activities that bound them to worldly things.  They are expected, as a tourist voiced out, to be inside the altar room, chanting [... Read More]

The self-sustaining Zilukha anim dratshang

AnimsNuns at the Zilukha dratshang reciting prayers

NUNNERY Thangthong Dewachen Drubthob goenpa, popularly known as the Zilukha anim (nun) dratshang in Thimphu, survives on money they make from reciting prayers (tsedup) for people, either at the dratshang or at people’s homes.

The anim dratshang currently shelters 40 anims, including the principal.  It is one of the private dratshangs in the country which does not receive any fund from the government.

Sometimes, the anims have to start reciting their prayer as early as [... Read More]

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