Saturday, February 5, 2022

Snowfall after 64 years

Punakha Dzong, Picture from Kuensel

This morning at 7:30 I was woken up by a call from my father from Wangdue. He was a little alarmed that I was still sleeping. I could sense it in his voice. ‘Nani, you are still in bed?’ he asked, hearing my groggy voice. ‘Look outside, it has snowed like crazy here!’

‘Yes, I saw it on the news last night,’ I replied. ‘It is snowing in Punakha and Wangdue, which has never happened in the last 30 years we have been here.’ He said, sounding concerned. My parents have called Wangdue their second home and have decided to settle there, moving between Sarpang and Wangdue. We have a running joke in the family that Wangdue is their summer residence and Sarpang their winter residence.

The residents of Wangdue and Punakha were pleasantly surprised to wake up to a winter wonderland of 3 inches of snowfall coinciding with the auspicious occasion of HRH The Gyalsey’s 6th Birth Anniversary. The local newspaper reported that the last snowfall the valley experienced was almost 64 years ago.

64 years ago? That’s epic! That’s why this post as it needs to be documented. 

As a former New Englander who has been through 18-20 inches of snowfall and winter storm experience where it feels like blades slicing through your face as the wind blows on the face and who have had the experience of skating on frozen water ponds and rivers, I told him to let the snowfall settle for a while and then shovel the driveway. And I went back to sleep. After all, it's lockdown day 21 and the weekend! 

With the pandemic raging for the third year in a row, crazy snowstorms on the east coast of America, flooding, grounds giving away to parked cars, being swallowed underneath like a bottomless monster pit, buildings and bridges collapsing like in Final Destination movies, and tigers and elephants hoarding peoples’ backyard, I have become immune to such news and nothing surprises me anymore.

As a development enthusiast, I will say that it’s climate change. But I have come across highly intellectual friends who call climate change a hoax and they call it God’s wrath, that the humans have become sinners more than ever before, and that it’s God’s way of pouring wrath on us. It’s the end of times and we should repent, stop sinning and be righteous. It’s a different school of thought altogether which always leads to disgruntlement and frustrations to the brink of not standing in the sight of each other because everyone has their own valid thoughts and facts/data to justify and no one is wrong. I respect their opinion and see validation in it from the biblical point of view, however, one should know when to draw a thin line between the spiritual point and understand the reality. Why not acknowledge each other’s thoughts and come to an agreement?

Back in the day, I’m assuming that all these did not affect us as it does now although the alarm on climate change was sounded ever since I could remember. Maybe because there was not much research and studies on these topics back in the day and information sharing was not as fast and easy as it is now although it was a burning issue. I feel that access to too much information in this digital age is one of the reasons why people are unable to distinguish between conspiracies theories and facts of reality.

On another note, I hope all are doing well in this lockdown. There doesn’t seem to be any sign of easing this lockdown. What day of the week is it, again? :D Who else is getting sick of this pandemic now? Okay, too many questions to which I’ve no answers.

Hoping for this year to be better. A little positivity never hurts. Stay dry and safe this snowy day.

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