Friday, 24 October 2008

Bhutan Photo Expedition: Just Because

Photograph © Tewfic El-Sawy/All Rights Reserved

I found this photograph amongst the thousands I made during the Tamshing Lakhang tsechu during my photo expedition Land of the Druk Yul. It appeals to me just because there's a human story unfolding here...unfortunately, I was whisked away to another spot before I could find out whether this was a monk greeting his wife and child, or whether he was the uncle, brother or just a friend. All I know is that this beautiful woman and her child had been waiting outside the lakhang for a while until he emerged, smiling broadly at them.

This is totally unrelated to this photograph, but I just read a hilarious post on David duChemin's has references to intestinal mutiny, a threatened body cavity search, a brief rant about how Kathmandu was maggoty with tourists, and an apt description of annoying European and American tourists.

I encountered a lot of those characters as well in Bhutan. The issue with Bhutan itineraries is that no matter how hard one tries, you'll invariably meet the same annoying tourists over and over again...either at one of the festivals or worse, at the same hotels. It's quite simple to identify the various nationalities...if they're really loud and look freshly showered in the mornings, they're usually Americans...if they hijack the only plate of butter from the buffet (and I have to walk up to their table and retrieve it), they're usually French...and as my friend Gavin Gough pointed out, they're British if one steps on their toes, and they're the ones who apologize.

The wisdom one acquires from traveling is just breathtaking, isn't it?