|Journey to Trongsa with Ugyen and Rupa :)|
Before departing, Rupa was preparing lunch for us. While waiting, Ugyen had told me his old-time story, when he started blogging as anonymous. There, he was writing his blog as if he was the driver. He narrated his story interestingly. I wished he would keep telling that non-stop :) It was a privilege in fact, to be told the story by him. He had such an imagination, funny, and was able to create many creative story. However, lately, he was kinda stuck with his other passion, which was archery :)
|Ugyen Gyeltshen - While we were busy taking photos, he was busy chewing his Doma :D|
He'd stayed with his job for two years there in Langthel. Initially, when he first joined in, I could still remember him mentioning his ambition to spend more time there alone, writing - especially when he had to stay faraway from his family members. He was very exciting about finishing his second book soon. However, as his job got busier, added with the fact that he couldn't concentrate missing his family members, plus busied himself with his new passion - archery, his dream to finish his second book had drifted away.
Now he wished to be able to move back to where his family lived and to find a new job there. There too, he could meet up with his best friend, Nawang Phuntsho, often - the great humble guy full of idea - and he believed that both of them could create something bigger together, with their combined ideas and motivation. Let's hope so ba!!! I wish your dream will come true soon Ugyen! :)
|Trongsa Dzong - the largest fortress in Bhutan - Trongsa, Bhutan|
At 2 pm we reached Trongsa town. We managed to pass the road block without having to wait so long. However, the next opening would be at 4.30 pm. We had ample time to do other thing before they were able to return back to Samcholing and I requested him if we could go to Trongsa Dzong as I had seen this huge and magnificent Dzong many times during my bus journey from Thimphu to Bhutan and vice versa. He was happily granting my wish to drop me there, however, as usual, he wouldn't go inside and prefer to wait us outside.
|Giant tree in front of Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
|Rupa and I at the entrance of Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
Too bad Rupa forgot to bring her Rachu with her.and we couldn't find anyone who could lend it to her too. Therefore, she had to wait outside and let me enter the fortress alone.
|Beautiful Trongsa Dzong from sideway - Trongsa, Bhutan|
"The temple was first established in 1543 by the Drukpa Lama, Ngagi Wangchuck. In 1647, his great-grandson - Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal - constructed the first dzong to replace it, called Chhoekhor Rabtentse Dzong with its short name of Choetse Dzong. It went through many extension in 18th century with Chenrezig Lhakhang was built in 1715, with Maitreya (Jampa) temple was added in 1771. They underwent many renovation many times too due to the damages caused by Assam earthquake in 1897, until the shape that you could see now.
|Inside Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
It was an important administrative building, providing the headquarter of the government of Trongsa District. It was a strategic control location to control Bhutan and for centuries it was the seat of the Wangchuck dynasty of penlops (governors), who effectively ruled over much of the eastern and central Bhutan, and from year 1907 have been Kings of Bhutan.
|Guru Rinpoche's painting outside the Lhakhang - Trongsa Dzong, Bhutan|
It was a major monastic complex contained as many as 25 temples inside and consisted of a maze of courtyards, passageways, and corridors." - source: Wikipedia
|With my two young guides to visit temples in Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
With such facts above, I was very lucky being able to meet one family inside the first temple that I visited. I had no idea that there would be 25 temples inside and the place was so huge with many courtyards, passageways, and corridors inside. If I had to visit the place alone, I would surely get lost!!! The two young children were able to converse in English too. They were guiding me and asking me to follow them along! Phew..... my lucky day!!! :)
|Interior courtyard at Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
There weren't many visitors too. In fact, we were the only one who visited the Lhakhang at that point of time. No other group.
|Turning prayer wheels in front of the Lhakhang at Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
Some of the Lhakhang were locked and we couldn't find the caretaker. So we just had to miss it out.
|Entrance to temple in Trongsa Dzong - Pretty similar with the one in Jakar Dzong|
I think we only visited about 7-8 temples there, only those opened one.
|Interior courtyard in Trongsa Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
It was also good that many were closed, otherwise my friends - Rupa and Ugyen - would have to wait for me longer :P
|Glimpse of the administrative office inside Choetse Dzong - Trongsa, Bhutan|
My friend was asking me if I visited Choetse Dzong and I had no idea where it was. Only after I read the information in Wikipedia, then I realized that Choetse Dzong was equal to administrative office in Trongsa Dzong. Therefore my friend, I had actually visited the place. But too bad, I only knew that you were working there, after my visit :)
|Tea break treat by Ugyen :)|
So, I finally came out from such a huge Dzong in one piece (the place was really too big for me). Sorry Rupa and Ugyen who had waited for me for so long. After the visit, we went to the Trongsa bus station, and had a tea break at one of the hotel nearby. Ugyen insisted paying for our momo and tea. Thank you Ugyen! After that, we bid ourselves goodbye. They had to go back as the road block time was reaching. I felt very sad when both of them leaving me. Not because of being alone, but because both of them had treated me very well during the past three days we were together. Thank you Rupa and Ugyen for everything you'd done for me. Thank you so much! :)
|Finally meeting up with Luzee at Trongsa bus station :)|
I was waiting near the big mani dzongkhar (prayer wheel) for Luzee to arrive. She, her sister (Drugyal), her niece (Lilly), and hired office driver (Wangdi) were coming all the way from Thimphu on that day and they would fetch me there. I was relieved and happy upon meeting them. I was worried if they faced long delay due to the road block and bad road condition on their way. Luckily everything went smoothly as per planned. We all drove all the way back to Bumthang, slept at Devi's house for a night and ready for our next journey, to the East of Bhutan!!! :)