Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Made it to Bhutan yesterday. Approach into Paro airport was exciting and different. U.S airports have long, straight in approaches which for lack of a better term are boring, or at least uninteresting, making them supposedly safer. This was more like something out of an adventure movie. We started out from a stop in Bangladesh and headed northwest until we could see the southern Himalayan peaks. We turned east and rapidly descended into the clouds. This was a little disconcerting as I knew there were mountains in there. As we broke through the lower layer of clouds, we were among deep valleys and lush, tree covered hills. We entered into a canyon and banked back and forth following the contours of the river at the bottom. I was reminded of Star Wars, or Top Gun where they would avoid enemy fire by negotiating their way through airplane unfriendly terrain. The river branched and the pilot chose to go right, entering an even narrower canyon, descending further. The air was clear as we weaved our way down, beginning to see the classic Bhutanese structures dotting the hillsides. I considered my good fortune by having 2 monks sitting across from me, and sharing the seat right next to me was the equivalent of a priest from a monestary in eastern Bhutan. What could happen?