Every year the Bhutanese celebrate “Blessed Rainy Day” where buckets are filled with flowers and the rain that falls during the night turns holy and is collected for the next morning. Everyone baths in this water to cleanse themselves of sin. I misunderstood everything a bit and left my empty bucket outside with flowers hoping that rain would fall at 4am. I was rather disappointed when I awoke to a dry bucket free of any holy water but apparently you fill the bucket before putting it out. Anyways, I did bath with normal tap water and its safe to say that my sins have been cleansed.
This day also marks the end of the rainy season and I am so happy to see it go! I absolutely love the rain but it only ever really rains here at night and the rest of the days are unbearably hot. In the next few weeks the climate will begin to get cooler and I cannot wait to have winter back - did I mention that I am obsessed with winter??
It is tradition for the Bhutanese to wake early, bath to cleanse their sins and eat “porridge” and drink “suja” for breakfast. Although Dylan and I were invited for breakfast and lunch we decided to skip the mornings festivities because firstly, “suja” is tea made with butter and salt and we honestly just can’t get used to the taste! And secondly, the “porridge” is rice made with chunks of dried beef in it and very much unlike the sweet version we get back home. We had planned to go to the monastery instead but slept way too late and missed all the festivities.
Blessed Rainy Day is a lot like Christmas back home, minus the presents and tree and general food choices (okay, its really different). Theres a ton of food prepared and everyone just eats and enjoys the day together. I’ve always considered Christmas Lunch back home to be a big meal but the Bhutanese really go all out. After nine months in this country I am still dumbfounded every time I see the amount of rice that gets cooked here - you could fit me into the pot, literally! Lots of alcohol is also consumed but I had been sick for the past while so I was excused from drinking too much, as is the custom.
With a belly full of rice we took a walk back home, thankful to have had an extra day off.