Archery (datse) is the national sport of Bhutan. There are traditional bows and arrows with modern archery techniques... the targets spaced at 140m intervals (that is 153 yards!)... ceremony kicks off the tournaments with supporters singing and dancing... and women come dressed to impress... making this sport a SPORT. I could see how archery is truly a part of their identity just from this practice at the Archery Stadium in Thimphu. I got a kick out of the men standing close to the target taunting the players at the other end of the field. I was not dressed to impress as the local women but my time watching this archery practice was one of the top highlights in Bhutan. 

Photos: Charlane Brady

thanks Bubba!

I love my friends & family no matter what their political opinions may be. I love through differences as I learn more. I love through challenges and triumphs as I have not faced one without the other. I love through mistakes as I have made plenty. I love through failures as I pick myself up with the help of others. 

There is no room for hate. It is that simple. Where my focus goes, my energy flows. Today I was reminded that I do love. 

Thanks for the reminders and motivating me Bubba! (<--link)


Duanwu Jie

Dragon Boat Festival, or Duanwu Jie, weekend is here and that means boat races, rice dumplings wrapped with leaf and looks like dancing. Street dancing was in full effect tonight. 

Photo: Charlane Brady

What is the story behind the festival?

According to the most popular theory, the Dragon Boat Festival, or Duanwu Jie, is celebrated now in China to commemorate the death of poet, Qu Yuan, over two thousand years ago.

Qu Yuan was a high-ranking minister to the king of the ancient state of Chu who decided to ally with the state of Qin, one of the most powerful states at that time. Qu Yuan believed that the stake was too high and opposed the alliance of Chu and Qin. However, the king had made up his mind and Qu Yuan was accused of treason and banished.

Unable to serve his state, Qu Yuan wrote a lot of poems while he was on exile. When he learned that Qin had conquered the capital of his state 28 years later, he drowned himself on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month.

Why are people celebrating this day?

Popular folklore has it that the local people, who admired Qu Yuan, paddled out on boats and threw rice dumplings into the river to feed the fish so that the poet's body could be saved.

Overtime, the ritual had evolved. People are no longer throwing lumps of rice into the river. Instead, they eat zongzi, a kind of rice dumpling wrapped with leaf and race dragon boats to celebrate the day.

What can people do to celebrate in 2012?

Stuff yourselves with a few zongzi, then head to Suzhou Creek to watch a dragon boat race organized by Shanglong Dragon Boat Club. According to information released on their website, spectators can get there by taking the Metro Line 3/4 to Zhongtan Lu. The race venue is adjacent to a residential area call Zhongyuan Liangwan Cheng.

Note: this information is from Why We're Getting a Four Long Weekend article