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Remembering my First Bhutan Trip in 2012

It’s been 10 years since my first trip to Bhutan!

It was in March 2012 that I had gone to Bhutan seeking solitude, peace and refuge from my life as a new single parent.

Hubby had moved to the UAE in May 2011, and I had had to cope with two grieving children, a hectic career and a new way of living — where I was handling everything, alone. It had been a rough 10 months and I had desperately needed a break, alone.

I chose Bhutan because he had told me to “go someplace safe” on my first solo sojourn.

Not only did I fall in love with Bhutan in an instant, I went back, every year, seeking the same or similar experiences, wanting to climb up to the same monasteries, hanging on to conversations that would help me understand how the Bhutanese could be so simple, content and happy.

I even wrote about some of the unique policies of the Bhutan government in Indian magazines.

Bhutan soon became my pilgrimage; a land I went to, sometimes 4 times in a year, to get recharged, to learn to breathe deep and to learn valuable life lessons.

                               On my first hike to the Tiger’s Nest… I’ve climbed up 13 times since then

Bhutan taught me to value traditions, culture, heritage and taught me how pride in your country can be easy and uncomplicated and even if I was called a “nationalist”, it would not matter because I had faith in my country.

Bhutan gave me the business model I was seeking, and which I have since adopted — High Value, Low Volume tourism.

Bhutan has given me friends who will be part of my life, forever.

My last trip was in November 2019. By this time, I had been to Bhutan 19 times. I had really thought I would be going on my 20th trip in March 2020. But that was not to be.

I look forward to breaking the jinx this year. Hopefully, Bhutan should open up soon.

Pics: I visited a village in 2012 and photographed the naughty children who posed for me happily. I took an address and promised to send them hard copies of the photos, which I did, in April 2012 itself.

This is the email I received in 2018 from the girl I had sent the photographs to, after she finally got out of her village and went to Thimphu (the capital city) and got access to a computer.

She’s also in the group photo.

Tell me, what’s not to love ❤

This post was first published on Travel Shots

Ritu March 25, 2022