Jigme Gets Hitched


Congratulations to the Bhutanese people. Looks like they're having a huge party around today's royal wedding.

Have you noticed? Most of the time the tone of news articles about Bhutan is a little bemused, treating the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon as kind of quaint and not quite of this world. Writers always try to mention that "gross national happiness" thing, which started "as a casual, offhand remark" by the previous King. I admit to having treated Bhutan the same way in my book, quoting a man named Phruba about a  

"Ceremony day after (He meant tomorrow) for weather making. It is big this year because this year we have two Junes." He paused. "Sometimes we have no August."

Excuse me?

He knew he had us and he warmed to the subject. "Oh yes. Today is the ninth. Maybe sometimes we have two ninths and maybe no eleventh. This is decided by the monks and they always agree."

It’s published in Kuensel (the newspaper) every Saturday, so you have to check.

"This is why you cannot know when are the festivals."


BootsThat quote comes from the Bhutan chapter of Common Sense and Whiskey, the book. You can read the entire chapter online.

The photo at the top is from Punakha, the site of the royal wedding. It's at the confluence of the Mo and Pho rivers. See over a hundred photos in the Bhutan Gallery at EarthPhotos.com.

And if you ever hear anything, please let me know where I can pick up a pair of these Royal boots.



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