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Archery in Bhutan – The National Sport

By Giorgio Cantele | November 12, 2018

In the afternoon of their fourth day in Thimphu, Bhutan, the RTC – CMC scholars headed into town to the main archery arena where, on a windy afternoon, they witnessed a portion of a modern archery match. Archery is the National sport of Bhutan. Competitions take place in team fashion, with members of each squad taking turns to shoot arrows at a small bedside-table sized concentric target located at a staggering distance of 460 feet (140 meters). To contextualize the significance of the distance an arrow has to travel from bow-release to target, a football field is 360 feet (109.1 […] Read More

PHOTO; image of rice, vegetables and meat dish

I am reaffirming my traditions…

By Kirsten Fink | November 12, 2018

Bhutanese eat with hands. Eating with spoons is an imported culture. The family members sit on the floor in a circle and the mother serves the food. Most of the Bhutanese still use traditional plates made of wood (dapa/dam/dolom) and bamboo (bangchungs). The favorite Bhutanese dishes are Ema Datsi (chili with cheese), Paa (sliced pork and beef) and red rice. No dish goes without chili. People also drink butter tea (suja) and Ara alcohol. Ara is made from rice, maize, millet, or wheat, and may be either fermented or distilled. The most distinctive characteristic of Bhutanese cuisine is its spiciness. Chillis are […] Read More

Sustainable Business in Bhutan

By Sunny Frost | November 10, 2018

Souvenir shopping can be a hard pill to swallow for 20 students studying Sustainability in a foreign country. Questions of appropriate consumptive practices remind students of the waste management dilemma that is becoming visible in the growing capital city of Bhutan. The ABC, Authentic Bhutanese Craft Bizarre, does not only sell souvenirs reflecting many of the experiences to be had in Bhutan, but also provides our group of students with models for sustainable business. If you find a never-ending row of Bamboo thatched huts, then you have arrived at the ABC. The smooth bamboo huts house a variety of artisan […] Read More

Christians in a Mainly Buddhist Country

By Jacquelyn Vaneyll | November 9, 2018

We three wanted to take a moment to share our perspectives as devout Christians spending time in a nearly wholly Buddhist country: Matthew Van Eyll: Stewardship of the land. As a Christian it is incredible to see a society living to the values of being good stewards of the land as God instructs us to be in the Bible. Ultimately the earth belongs to Him. Psalm 24 says, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;” (Bible Gateway 2018). When it comes to destroying the earth and polluting it, we must […] Read More

photo; traditional building

Traditional Architecture Symbolism

By Michael Gonzales | November 9, 2018

Upon entering Bhutan, one of the first things you notice is the intricate colors, shapes, and design of the architecture. The photo displays the beautiful artwork that adorns many of the buildings here in Bhutan. Above the doorway, you see the four powerful animals, the tiger, snow leopard, garuda (a mythical bird), and the dragon. These animals have mythical powers that offer protection and good fortune to the household. There is a special significance to each of these images. The tiger represents confidence and dignity. The snow lion signifies dynamism and purity. The color white as seen on the snow […] Read More

The Arrival Story

By Bailee McDaniel | November 8, 2018

We all sit there in the Bangkok airport, we’ve been traveling for about twenty-three hours now. Everyone hasn’t slept more than a few hours on each flight. Yet, despite all of us being exhausted and sore, we are all filled with anxious excitement. We have finally ended our two longest flights. Just a couple more hours waiting for the plane to arrive, then two and half hours and we will finally be landing in Paro, Bhutan. I’ve walked around the airport a little, and it’s busy even at the early hours of the morning. We are thirteen hours ahead of […] Read More


Wings of the Dragon

By Keith Labbe | November 5, 2018

30 plus hours of travel that was punctuated with cultural and environmental amazement ends with a well-earned night of rest. The flight into Bhutan that began in Bangkok, Thailand at 5am with a small stop in Guwahati, India was full of anticipation and excitement.  The first view of the Himalayan mountains from “On the wings of the dragon” instigated further excitement that, finally, we were entering the “HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH.”     The ride from Paro to Thimphu was fascinating.  The landscape was amazing as we traveled for almost two hours along a winding mountain road that followed along […] Read More

Sustainability in Bhutan: Learning in the Land of Happiness

By Mercedes Embid | November 4, 2018

Greetings CMC and Vail Valley Edwards Community! My name is Mercedes and I am a professor and lead faculty for the Sustainability Studies Bachelor’s program (BASS) at the Vail Valley at Edwards Campus. This fall the Sustainability Studies students were invited by Royal Thimphu College (RTC) to travel to the remote Asian country of Bhutan for an academic field experience. To make a beautiful and long story short, this scholarly opportunity emerged after a presentation that I gave at the government’s Gross National Happiness Conference in November 2017, entitled, “Sustainability and Happiness: Bringing an Authentic Ethic to the Business Model.” […] Read More