A short trip to Phuentsholing

On a blessed day, after a heavy festive lunch, we packed our bags for Phuentsholing, the busy town bordering another busy town of India. Its a hub for local traders and businessmen, as well as a shopping destination for the locals, as one can get almost everything from across the border at a cheaper price than in Bhutan.

8 hours drive down south, through the meandering valleys and narrow highways, not to forget the foggy stretches (which scared the hell out of me), it was nice to be back after a very long time. And the memories rushed back into my head; of the street snacks, indian sweets, dishes, street vendors, shops, shopping centre, busy streets, busy people, beggars, shopkeepers calling out to come and buy from their shops, bargains taking place between the buyer and the seller, the smell of the warm air, the change in the vegetation, the “caw” “caw” of the crows ..the list goes on..
I also love to eat at the stops we make along the way, at a restaurant or a canteen and at times a little town offering delicious food to the travellers. Bhutanese Meals are served at all the stops, except at the canteen in Takthikoti, where indian delicacies are served. Making a stop, taking a short break and relishing the delicious food at one of those stops is a JOY :). It really is a highlight and a MUST, that i always look forward to when i travel. Its nothing extravagant, and is always simple and basic but i enjoy it so much. Love it.
EN-ROUTE-The highway through the mountains

EN-ROUTE-view of Chukha Hydropower Plant, the oldest power station.
EN-ROUTE- a loner, he was.
Almost there, the plains, you see.
The Phuentsholing gate, beyond which is the indian border town called Jaigoan.

Ofcourse,we went to say hello to the lazy Crocodiles πŸ˜› at the Crocodile farm. A minimal entrance fees is charged which goes back to the welfare of farm :).
Lunch at peljorling restaurant in town. Got insider info to try the local/typical bhutanese meals. Did it. They also have an indian restaurant under the same roof.

Paid a visit to the Zangdopelri in the heart of the town, lit butter lamps  and prayed for all the santient beings.  
Bought Doma and Pan and he was kind enough to allow me to photograph him with his shop. I just love the colours. 

The indian sweets -you don’t leave Phuentsholing without them sweets. (I noticed that some are vegan) @ Ashok restaurant

The snacks @ Ashok restaurant

A small, local and simple restaurant, where we stopped for some sweets. We noticed many locals enjoying the delicious meals served there. So, we went back the next day for breakfast. My god! it was busy, they really had something going on in there. Had to wait to get a table (which doesn’t happen often in Bhutan).

You can see from the picture that it is very basic, but the food was really good and i loved sipping tea from the glass (haven’t done it for a long time) and the price is very inexpensive.

WHAT also caught my attention, was an old monk who sat on the table behind us, eating very quietly. The waiter caught my eye and said “he comes every day to eat but we never charge him, never”. And this act of kindness from them really pleasantly surprised me. I was really impressed and definitely very moved.
 i wish the best for them :). Lets spread love and kindness πŸ™‚

Vegetable momo (also vegan)

Chai- Milk tea
betel nut trees

EN-ROUTE-Taken from the moving car.

driving back home, road is widened and new. On top of the hill, to the right is Dobji Dzong (fortress)
Locate the truck on the Haa (another city) high way 

do you see the cows grazing?

Look what we have here πŸ™‚

oops ..forgot the name…i think its vegetable manchurian..hhmmmm