Although Iam not from Punakha, I have a reason larger than my life to go there. Firstly, its place from where our forefathers like Zhabdrung established our statehood. Secondly, its a place from where the legacy of our beloved monarchs emerged.. Thirdly and perhaps the most important reason, although totally personal, its a place from where my better half hails.Therefore even a slightest thought of being in Punakha used to bring me immense joy.
Thanks to my father-in-law, we now have a small land on which we have collectively managed to build a small house. My family lovingly call it our home. And few days ago, I was there to do some maintenance work with my wife. Rain is a menace in Punakha. So we were there to a raise a protection wall; A wall that would both benefit us and our neighbors alike. We wanted our neighbors to know your intentions. We were also hopeful that our initiatives would be received positively.
But things took a different turn. One of our neighbor threatened to take us to the court. I couldn't understand his point but I felt totally wordless. To me, Punakha defines the sanctity of sacred Bhutan. And accordingly, I consider Punaps as the people of wisdom. But There, I felt totally baffled by Punap who wanted to take us to the court for wanting to build a wall on our own land!!!
Towards evening we were in for another surprise. Few trucks came in carrying in stone, sand and cement in the rain. But our neighbors came in group and vehemently denied us a unloading place. I dont know their reason yet but every neighbor tried their best to obstruct us. They all tried their best be as hostile as possible. Finally with the help of truckers and our contractor, we were able to unload our materials on a piece of government land. We left our envious neighbors more disgruntled and more angry.
That evening, we were invited for a dinner at my wife's uncle's place. Some day I would like to write another post about this uncle. But that evening, More than the sumptuous dinner, it was his majestic apartment that left me bewildered. And at the dining table, it was me who over dinned and a cat that over puked.
That night I went to bed with a sense of regret. A day in Punakha made me doubt about our much talked and praised Bhutanese sense of communality and solidarity.