Saturday, August 27, 2011

Audacity of Hope

He doesn’t know his father’s name nor can he recognize his face if God could ever arrange their meeting. His mother died when he was 5 years old. He was brought up and is looked after by his grandparents; aagay  Dorji Norbu and aang-gay  Dema. This is a story of Hope. This is a story of Pema Dorji, a Class V student of Lichen Community Primary School, Trashi Yangtse.
Like any other rural family, Pema’s family was also self-sufficient; a patch of land to till, cows to rear and most importantly they were HAPPY. But just one month after giving birth to a baby girl, Pema’s Mother died of an illness. Following the dead of his wife, Pema’s father left everything behind and went to settle in another place. Where an irresponsible father didn’t bother of his new born child, a relative who stays in Chokordung (Trashiyangtse town) volunteered to look after the baby. Now, she is in Class III at Trashi yangtse Lower Secondary school. Pema Dorji yearns to meet her someday.
Pema says, with a sign, he would have helped his mother in every possible way had she been alive today. As far as his father is concerned, he doesn’t have any feelings for him. Even upon my numerous insisting he didn’t utter a word. He just nodded his head and gave a sneer.
On his way to school and back home, which is 4kms of walk each day, Pema often finds himself face to face with wild animals like bear and deer. He, in his animated voice, narrates an incident of encountering a bear. One day as he was on his way to school, he saw a black bear approaching towards him roaring like a lion and he had eluded the hungry beast by hiding in bushes. He, like any other boy, burst into laughter after mentioning his heroic escape to me.  
During monsoon, his journey to education becomes even more challenging. The thick forest through which Pema Dorji and Sherub Dema, a school mate, travels 6 days a week is graced with slippery path and leeches feed mercilessly on those tiny tired legs. In-addition to it, a seemingly small stream that runs down the gorge turns itself into a little monster and erodes the temporary bridge, made out of plank, which connects the hamlet with rest of the hamlets on opposite side of a mountain.
On one such incident, Pema and Sherub were returning from school. They didn’t find the bridge to cross so they returned to a hill nearby and shouted at top of their lungs for help. As luck would have it, Tshering Wangmo, Sherub Dema’s Elder sister was working in her field. She heard them calling and she rushed down the hill to the gorge with a rope. As Pema narrated to me, they were pulled across the fast flowing stream with the rope tied around their waist.
Pema Dorji says he is grateful to his grandparents because it was them who admitted him in the school amidst tragedy. 
Ordeal of such measure has not yet depleted the desire of this little boy to become Pilot. He tells me he wants to give his grandparents everything but a flying experience shall definitely be one of the first gifts.


  1. Touching. Keep writing. Bhutan needs more of such cases to get into the root in making the GNH nation. Touching. Keep writing. Bhutan needs more of such cases to get into the root in making the GNH nation.

  2. Thank you...shall touch and keep writing..

  3. Good Work GB!!! Keep Posting!

    This is the story of every rural Bhutanese where the plight of innocent people are often tested.. Sad thing!

  4. Oh yeah! if the government knows about the school then why not help the students run their days without the difficulties faced by them in their everyday lives.

    Keep posting la!

  5. Luvly, Mr. Bhandari! I like the way you expressed the story-line. For me, it is so touching and magnificently a brilliant job. I would love to see you keep writing and posting here. Best of Luck!

  6. Thank you Rikku, yeesi7 and Subba Shan. its more than encouragement to see responses. keep inspiring me to write more.. GOD BLESS U ALL

  7. The life truly is blessed until one finds an excuse to turn around. The story truly is true for motivation to those....who needs to stand tall with hope. loved the fact that you brought to notice....the plight looming around...' Audacity of Hope'.

  8. is such a nice story......thank you for sharing..:)

  9. simply a beautiful truth lead by thousands of those little ones some where in some remote parts of our country.

    luckly a trs we get to make some difference in their life.thanks cos thru ur writing i cud meet wonderful pema wt wonderful dreams..may his dream come true.u keep writing, thanks

  10. Such a great a story! Liked reading it la, sir. :) Wish the boy all the luck in achieving his dream in life. May God bless him...

  11. Thank you langa Bro for the comment...I too wish him all the best,,,,,Honour the courage of a human being

  12. mind blowing Gayatri and good job keep on wring


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