Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The brutality of alcohol as seen through the lens of personal experiences

Right from my early childhood, I had seen people heavily drinking and often fighting amongst themselves, but I had never been exposed to the brutality of alcoholism until I was 9 years old. I was in Wangdue Phodrang hospital undergoing treatment for ocular infections when I got familiar with a man on the adjacent bed who was admitted for liver cirrhosis. I heard that doctors and nurses had strongly advised him never to take alcohol again. He was a very outgoing and cheerful man. Whenever his family-members brought him homemade food, he used to share it with me and my father. I can still remember the delicious fish curry and rice he had once shared with me after some of his relatives visited him.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Lessons I have learned from my late father

Photo of my late father

Every year, the month of September transports me back in time and reconnects me with the memories of my late father. September 11 has become one of the darkest days of my life. It was on this day in 2005 when I had to part with my beloved father, the only person I could call my own family. Since then, I have been living in a story that does not have a protagonist. Without him to stand beside me, I had to move on with life alone, often swimming through the turbulence and rough waves on my own. 14 long years have gone by since that fateful day, but I can still feel the vacuum that has been created by his absence in my family. If he were still alive, he would have been 85 today and I am sure he would have been still strong enough to play with his grandchildren and entertain them with bedtime stories and jokes. It is very sad that my children have to live without the memories of their paternal grandparents throughout their life.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Global warming is now becoming a reality

Photo of Wangdue-Tsirang Highway submerged in water in August 2019. Image source: Kuensel

Although Bhutan has more than 70 percent of its land under forest coverage, it is clearly visible how we have been facing the brunt of global warming over the years. The atmosphere is heating up right in front of us. September is supposed to be a comparatively cooler month in Thimphu, but I am still using a fan at times. Until some decades ago, Thimphu used to be one of the coldest places in Bhutan around this time of the year. We used to receive heavy snowfalls by October and November but today, we don’t see such snowfalls even during the peak winter season.