Skip to main content

Driving from Phuentsholing to Thimphu

Day Five

We had one more long day on the road planned. From Phuentsholing to Thimphu is anywhere from 140 to 175 kilometers, depending on the road signs or maps you read. Google maps times it at about a ninety-minute drive. Realistically, it's six or seven hours. But here's the thing: Drivers in Bhutan are so mellow that it's not a stressful drive. It's relaxing. There are plenty of stops along the way for stretching legs and getting a snack. Everyone is driving slowly and there are guardrails along most of the corners so you aren't afraid for your life every five minutes.





Our tour guide was Bhutanese but had gone to university in Chennai, India, so when we told him how much Muffin loved dosa and idli, he understood right away the importance of a South Indian breakfast and knew of a spot where we could get one. The Indian army has installations throughout Bhutan and along the main road between Phuentsholing and Thimphu there is an army canteen. It was the perfect place to stop for a snack, a couple hours after we'd been on the road. We had some great chai along with dosa, idli, and vada. A couple hours later we had another snack stop, where there was a nice green pasture with grazing cows for Muffin to wander around for a bit before getting back into the car. (She was also finding it unappealing to use some of the bathrooms along the way, taking a look and saying "I want to go outside instead." She didn't mind the cows and the cows didn't mind her.)


It was cold and rainy when we arrived in Thimphu but before going to the hotel it was necessary to stop at Memorial Chorten to spin the prayer wheels and circumambulate at least three times in a clockwise direction.
Memorial Chorten on a sunny day. (Image from wikipedia.)
Our hotel was Peaceful Resort and it was located above the city, far enough away so that we couldn't wander around to get some dinner or do some shopping. But it was nice to take a walk and let Muffin play outside safely along the road with few cars going by.

The balcony had a Muffin cage.
And a very short door.
When we arrived this chair was mysteriously placed in front of the mirror.
Some sort of Buddhist mystery to ponder?
I had read in a guidebook, or perhaps on wikitravel, that the dogs in Bhutan don't sleep at night. Yikes. We thought we were used to dogs barking in India, but these guys were nonstop all night long except when it was raining and thundering too loudly to hear them.

Fortunately, we did not have an early morning on the road planned for the next day. We had a full day of sight-seeing in Thimphu, including a nice morning hike.

Day Six Coming Soon

Day One: 8 Days on the Road from Darjeeling to Bhutan
Day Two: Some Enforced Site-Seeing in Darjeeling
Day Three: Aloobari Monastery: Escaping Darjeeling to See Some Nature
Day Four:  We Made the Long Journey from Darjeeling to Phuentsholing

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Acid Bug

My blog will now join the short list of results that pop up when you search for "nairobi fly, acid bug" on Google. Mike was hit by one over the weekend.
The Nairobi fly is a small beetle that does not bite or sting, but based on its nickname acid bug, guess what it does? The insides of the bug are toxic, and if you smack it against your skin the juices cause a burning rash. They are common throughout East and Central Africa, and it's the season for them here in Burundi. We think Mike and his friend rode through a swarm of them on their bikes over the weekend, because his friend has some burn spots, too, and the spots appeared on both of them after they returned from the ride.
We've heard of two remedies to soothe the burning, but Mike hasn't tried either yet. One is to use toothpaste, the old-school white kind, and the other is to cut a potato and rub it on the burn area. Both the toothpaste and the potato are supposed to draw out the acid. If you wash the area imm…

Follow-up to My Previous Post

Kiddo likes to wear cool jewelry and those shirts that have the sequins that have a color or design in one direction and a different color or design in the other direction. I want her to express herself and feel comfortable with her fashion choices. I do not want other kids grabbing her pendants or touching her sequins uninvited.

I feel guilty over an incident at the bus stop this morning. Kiddo was wearing a cool pendant and a little boy her age ran up and touched it because he thought it was cool, too. And neither Kiddo nor I said anything. It did cross my mind to say something. But so did: Kiddo didn’t say anything and her body language didn’t give me any clues toward her comfort level. Was she simply surprised, but not bothered? Or was she annoyed? I didn’t want to cause a scene with a seven-year-old child. (This kid is loud.) I didn’t want to cause a scene with his mother. (She scolds her kids all the time but it doesn’t seem to stop any of their grabby behavior.)

In the past I …

Book Review: Ghostland: An American History in Haunted Places by Colin Dickey

After you've read something, please consider leaving a line or two on Goodreads and Amazon. The authors appreciate it!

Here's my review as it appears on Goodreads.

Ghostland: An American History in Haunted Places by Colin Dickey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really liked this book in the beginning. I grew up in an old haunted house in New England, yet I'm always a skeptic. (99% of supernatural activity ends up being the wind or a cat — and cats are creepy as hell.) I liked reading the stories behind the stories, whether they debunked the legends or gave credence to them. I’ve always been interested in history and nonfiction and ghost stories are the old “fake news.” Entertaining but you shouldn’t necessarily take them at face value. As the book went on, I found the stories themselves no less interesting but the format became tedious.

A couple of the stories really stood out to me. There are many cases of ghost stories being used to control a narrative that makes people feel sa…