Saturday, May 24, 2014

Interesting Things About Bhutan

So I am sure I do not have to tell you in length about how great this place is. Pretty much all the rumors you hear about this place are true. My Western trained brain is constantly trying to find problems and bad things, but I am really struggling. This goes to the extend where the national newspaper will write about patients in hospitals and readers can send in money or gifts to the person. The news here really is not like the news we know back home. It appears to be focusing a lot on the positive developments. 
It really is something weird to get used to. 
I don't want to bore you with the usual descriptions of how beautiful this place is, because no words would do this place justice. 
Instead, I would like to share some things/fun facts I have learned about this country, which you probably did not know about. 

1.) No Killing 
I am sure you are aware that Bhutan is a Buddhist country, however they really take it to the next level and there are no slaughter houses in the entire country. Also in villages no one will actually kill their chickens and cows. Because meat is actually being consumed the country imports all its meat from India. 
This is goes to the extend that no one can really do anything against all the stray dogs, which are really in abundance in this country. (As in any other country in Asia. The other countries just seem to have less mercy) So there is a national sterilization campaign, which asks people to bring in their dogs for sterilization. Tuesday is national love-your-dog day and you will get a free gift with sterilizing your dog. 

2.) "Life is a journey, complete it" 
This was written on a road sign asking drivers to drive carefully. In China the government just leaves the damaged cars along the road to warn its citizens, but in Bhutan they remind their drivers with a very philosophical sentence. 

3.) Most speak English 
And this to a very good extend. Some people will actually have an Indian accent, because for a long time Bhutan only had Indian English teachers. Now there are more Canadians and Americans coming to Bhutan to teach. But I can speak with so many people! It is truly great to have this many good English speakers in Bhutan. 

4.) Smoking Cigarettes is illegal 
That is right. Completely illegal in the entire country. The government is thinking about loosening the restrictions on this law though, because since the law has been put in place the illegal sales of cigarettes has picked up and has become a huge business. In Bhutan cigarette smugglers will get between 3-5 years in prison. 
I have seen many people smoke though so it doesn't seem to really work anyway. 

5.) The Beer is REALLY good! 
I mean.... really good! Just think about where Bhutan is and now imagine them producing beer. I know! It doesn't make any sense. But, the beer is really delicious! They even produce their own Scotch, which I am very eager to try and I will most likely buy a bottle to bring back home. 

6.) The Bhutanese love to party! 
They seem like pretty intense party goers to me. They love their beer and scotch and frequently chew Beetle-nut. I have talked to some guys in my age and they told me all about rap music and Bob Marley. Most are huge soccer enthusiasts and the guys could list all the players on most of the important soccer teams. 

7.) The Good Merit 
It is really amazing to watch the Bhutanese collect their good merit by either walking around stupas, bowing in the temples or any other mean. We went to a big stupa in the capital of Bhutan and the older generation all had their food packed for the day so that they could walk the entire day around the stupa swinging their prayer wheel in one hand and going through their prayer  beads in the other. 
Today I went to a temple where I saw 3 boys, who were probably all around 4 years old do their prayers and bows. 

No comments:

Post a Comment