Day 2, Bhutan, Paro-Dochu La-Thimphu-Punakha

This was a day when we left Paro, and travelled through Dochu La (La is a pass) to Thimphu, got some permits (which also allowed us to explore the main street of the little capital at leisure while we waited for the paperwork…Geetanjali got us special permission to go to Phobjikha, which is no longer allowed, to see the critically-endangered Black-necked Cranes)…..and on to Punakha.

I am leaving for Pune today (the train is at 4pm) so I will just post some photos….

The Dzong and the National Museum (damaged in the earthquake, so no longer open to tourists) at Paro:

Punakha Dzong 211112 Bhutan

The stream flowing near it….

river akha Dzong 211112 Bhutan

A huge flock of Red-billed Choughs that we saw on our way:

Red bld chghs 211112 Bhutan

A

TRI-COLOURED SHRIKE:

Tri clr shrike 211112 Bhutan

An unknown, beautiful blue wildflower:

Blue wldflwr 211112 Bhutan

Signposts:

Photobucket

The Royal Couple (they didn’t come to meet me, alas)

Royal Cpl 211112 Bhutan

A

BLUE PANSY

Blue Pansy 211112 Bhutan

Geetanjali working on our special permits at the Thimphu Immigration Office:

Thimphu immigrtn 211112 Bhutan

Parimala, Savitha and I went off to explore the handicrafts stalls….here are some masks and someone is trying one on….

Mask 211112 Bhutan Thimphu

The phallus is a symbol of strength and prosperity, and is painted on many house walls. Women who have no children also make votive offerings of masks and realistically-painted phalluses, which are on sale:

mask and phls thimphu 211112 Bhutan

mask and phls himphu 211112 Bhuta

The bamboo baskets behind this girl are for packing lunch, and Savitha and Parimala bought some…one fits tightly into the second:

shop thimphu 211112 Bhutan

Ladies are the stall owners, and ladies sell ladles:

ladles thimphu 211112 Bhutan

I popped into the Textile Museum very briefly:

textile museum himphu 211112 Bhuta

In Bhutan everything…water, the air, the movement of a car, a human hand, can produce a prayer. Here, a mountain stream turns a prayer wheel constantly:

river prayer wheel 211112 Bhuta

When in difficulties or bad health, families consult astrologers who tell them how many (hundreds or thousands) of these Tsa-tsas or “stupa cakes” made of wood or lime, to put at what locations:

stupa cakes 211112 Bhuta

I do love “zero” signposts!

Dochu La 211112 Bhuta

At Dochu La, dusk was falling as we explored the 108 stupas put up there:

Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

The Stupas and the arches made great silhouettes against the darkening sky:

silhouette Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

slhoutet Dochu La 211112 Bhutan, s

108 stupas Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

The pass faces a range of the snow-capped peaks of the Himalaya:

2 snw cps Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

snw cap Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

snw cp Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

Here’s a detail from one of the 108 Stupas:

108 stps Dochu La 211112 Bhutan

I close with this view of the main Stupa at Dochu La, with all the others behind it…pink and mauve in the gathering dusk….

Dochu La stupa 108 211112 Bhuta

I am now getting JAPANESE as well as Russian spam on LJ, and I am sure there are words that would never use in polite circles! I am rarely able to post comments, and it’s only a sense of cussedness that keeps me posting here. I will be putting up more photos on Facebook…do see them!

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: