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Far-far between China and India in the mountains is a small Buddhist monarchical state of Bhutan.
Live in Bhutan open and hospitable people, who love traditions and do not like Nepalese. Monarchs help the traditions of Bhutanese (and then the citizens would have long ago drunk and scrunched). Here, for example, the national sport & # 151; archery. Everywhere there are shooting areas & # 151; length with a football field, width with bowling. When the arrow hits the target exactly (a hundred meters, not a mosquito sneezed), the archer's support team, watching the progress, runs out and performs a dance with a song about the following: "Oh, oh, Petya pulled the string and got straight to the target, he could and in the very center of the hit, but we are all so proud of the result, so Petya is a fine fellow & raquo ;.
Many Bhutanese are dressed in national costumes. The monarch cares about preserving culture & # 151; you do not have to wear a striped or checkered plaid, but then you will not get to the reception in the housing office or any other state institution. Television, by the way, was banned 10 years ago.
The second time in my life I met an optical effect called "halo" (first time in Greenland):
Everywhere a lot of urns with the inscriptions & laquo; do not forget about me & raquo; and & amp; use me & raquo ;.
Since by the time I arrived here I had not smoked for three weeks, I did not immediately notice that no one was smoking anywhere, and there were no steers in the streets. It turned out that # 151; monarchy is the same; in the whole country a couple of years ago they banned smoking. Even here all religions are banned, except for Buddhism.
Car plates are cut from the film and pasted who is just on white plastic, and who is on the mirror film? for beauty. The fonts on the rooms are quite diverse & # 151; at whom that was. The upper inscription is made in a Bhutanese letter, which is no different from Tibetan.
Road signs are drawn by hand.
And they often sign.
In principle, Bhutan has nothing of its own, except culture. Almost all things are imported from India, even national clothes, even sewer hatches with the inscription "swastika & raquo ;:
All the signs in the country are the same. Wooden shields with a blue (less often "red") box and white text. Although the Internet cafe, even a restaurant, it does not matter. No neon coke on the roofs, no plastic phones the size of Godzilla in the streets.
For some reason it is believed that it is difficult to get to Bhutan. Before the trip, I heard that there is almost a quota of 600 foreigners a year. All this is nonsense full. " take it and fly (tourists, fortunately, there really is not enough). The only thing that can prevent you from getting here is # 151; greed. Many will prefer the role of barbecue on the Turkish coast trip to the country of gingerbread houses.
By the way, about the gingerbread houses. Previously, Bhutanese houses were just houses, if not boring.
But in the mid-seventies the monarch decided " but why is this my Bhutan people somehow boring lives? And he ordered all the houses to paint. Therefore, here are painted completely all the buildings & # 151; from the transformer booths to the airport building. The main motive is & # 151; ornamental, then, at will, beasts of different purposes and amulets are added. Coloring the house is not a cheap exercise, so people compete, who is richer than the finfyfir will come out.
Any home & # 151; as Mstera or Palekh casket. Here is one of the buildings in the royal residence in the capital, the city of Thimphu:
But an ordinary house in the city of Paro:
The difference is not present, all is painted.
Previously, houses were built from some sort of sandstone, so they did not last long. Before us is & # 151; not medieval ruins, but the buildings of the late 1960s:
One of the peculiarities of local culture is the legend of some saint who, five hundred years ago, successfully fought with evil spirits with the help of his own penis. Therefore, every village house painted a penis.
In cities they are embarrassed a little, but also draw, if the street is not central.
And it does not bother anyone, because such an image on the wall performs two very important functions. First, it protects the members of the family from evil spirits:
Secondly, it protects from all kinds of rumors and rumors. This is the only country where I did not have to write anything on the walls.
Sewers are taken directly to the wall of the building to be easier to repair, and so that neighbors can not be poured.
It does not change for centuries only a real way of life & # 151; rustic. The house in the village should be three-story. On the first floor & # 151; cowshed.
On the second & # 151; kitchen,
and & # 151; the most elegant & # 151; prayer.
Third floor & # 151; loft for drying hay. Sen in May in the attic is not kept, and a stuffed calf is possible.
In front of the house sat the hostess with her granddaughter and girlfriend. The Bhutanese house leaves the eldest daughter "# 151; the son must either build something himself or move to the woman.
On the street ran chicken with already plucked assholes. Probably, this can be immediately behind the tail & # 151; and in the soup.
The only flat in the country is reserved for the airport, so that the farmland is located on the steps.
Some time ago I took myself for the habit of cutting my hair anywhere, except in Moscow. Unsuccessful result can always be leveled by the machine, but so far luck. Over the shoulders & # 151; hair, grown after haircuts in the UAE and Taiwan. The King of Bhutan hangs next to the specimens of haircuts.
As a foreigner I'm ripped off somewhere in a dollar or thirty. Master works at such a speed that he has to put on his fingers wrappers from the blades, so as not to earn corn:
In the output monks are allowed to go down from the monastery to the city, which they gladly do. They drink, go to the girls, although it is impossible. If a monk has completely lost his conscience, and wants to go into the world, he must pay the monastery a fortune of two hundred dollars.
Death in Bhutan is no less interesting than life.
For example, you died. Relatives go to an astrologer who says where to go and put 108 tall tree trunks with white flags. Usually this place is somewhere in the mountains. They come, cut the forest all day, cut down branches, hang flags. Mandatory white, without any pictures. On the flags prayers are printed, which the wind will read, waving matter.
If relatives are few? they are worse, it will take several days to put the mast. I do not know how local astrologers are favorable to the circumstances, but the flags are met and high in the mountains amidst a dense forest, and close to roads.
Color flags are no longer relevant to the deceased, they are simply put in this way. for happiness, for luck.
Their second after color difference is " the presence of pictures in prayers.
So, I digress. The most interesting thing about the dead. The corpse, of course, can only be cremated (even in a mountainous country there was a tradition of burying rocks). The resulting ash should be mixed with white clay, divided into 108 parts and nalepit small stupas, which then burned on fire and painted white or gold. In the bottom of each mortar there is a note with the name of the deceased. The mortar is placed in the mountains along all sorts of gorges, so that the rain does not immediately wash away. Here is someone's grandmother (the inscription on the wall is just a mantra, do not pay attention):
And here's my cousin:
Of course, the story of Bhutan will be incomplete without mentioning that on the roof of absolutely every house a white flag must be installed. so that everything was fine.

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