How could we not be happy on International Happiness Day, our third morning in Bhutan, finishing our coffee and delicious dosas, those thin crepes served with spiced potatoes? After driving in Oman for 17 days, Magellan was enjoying the prospect of Tashi, our driver from Wind Horse Tours, Treks & Expeditions, at the wheel on the climb up to Dochula Pass. And at making Tashi and Namgyel, the Wind Horse “boys”, laugh at his zany approach to speaking their language.
Despite the attempts of Namgyel, our guide, to teach us a new word every day starting with “hello” (ku-zu-zang-po), Magellan wasn’t mastering Dzongkha. However, “rasha,” their word for cooked lamb, had caught his eye on a dinner menu. So instead of learning cursory phrases, he substituted “rasha” for everything, frequently causing the four of us to burst out laughing at its absurdity. “So what do you know about GNH?” Namgyel asked us that morning. “Rasha,” Magellan replied.
Before we tell you about one of our many days of happiness in this little country (Nova Scotia is larger), here’s what we learned about Bhutan’s main commodity, Gross National Happiness (GNH). [Read more…]