This time round, we are experiencing an exciting time; it is almost wildly thrilling, to say the least. But then, excitements besides, we have a greater responsibility to think beyond matters mundane. We can do a lot better, together.

Rain has started to beat us. It is all very well when it hits our good earth from time to time. But we also had a massive hailstorm recently. For the farmers elsewhere, it was the beginning of a hard time that they will have to endure this Fire Monkey Year. For the farmers of Thimphu and Paro, especially, this year is not going to be a year of good apple harvest.

As if everything depends on it, you might say. Yes, it does, to awful lot of families.

And each time we have a torrential rain, we are reminded of our incapacity to right and bolster our drainage systems. Should our alleys and byways flood always when heavy downpours hit us? We spend millions, and more, to beautify our city pockets with large and flashing, often mind-numbingly meaningless structures. All the while, our drains remain gloriously filled with waste and stagnant water.

Change is coming; we see it on the surface of our highways. Hills are being torn down to widen the road. Gaping spaces in between the cuts make for a dangerous ride. In a rush to achieve our dreams, perhaps we are compelled to be a little reckless. And that’s all fine. Patience is a virtue.

And, come July, we will have local government elections. It is important that our people participate fully so that we can hold ourselves accountable in the end. Rural development is necessary; it must happen. A strong and credible local government is critically necessary so. At the heart of a successful democracy lies vibrant and robust local governance system.

Now the Cabinet reshuffle has given us new ministers heading key ministries. Change is good; it must happen. We wish new ministers well. Also, at the same time, we expect a lot more from them.

We feel the pulse of the changing nation. It is exciting.