Thruebab, known popularly as Blessed Rainy Day, is upon us.

It is one of the important cultural events or festivals in Bhutan, celebrated with much fanfare and flourish in the eastern parts of the country. The celebration marks the end of monsoon. It is believed that on this day, blessings fall on earth’s waters.

That’s why in many parts of the Himalayas, thruebab is observed as a bathing and cleansing festival because of the healing powers of the water on this day when the sun enters the domain of Virgo and shines directly on the star Rishi for a week, which is believed to cleanse the impurities of water. 

However, because most celebrations in Bhutan can’t happen without alcohol, celebrations like thruebab can sometimes be dangerous. Archery is an integral part of any celebration. Games such as archery, khuru and degor so become fatal because of carelessness and too much drinks.  

Events and festivals give us our unique identity. We must celebrate them, but we must also be responsible while observing such events.

Travelling is never good while under the influence of alcohol. Playing games as part of the celebration is important but mindless consumption of alcohol can be dangerous. Such celebrations basically are supposed to be a close family event. And it is always better this way.

In such uncertain times as we live in today, the celebration itself can be a problematic affair. Large gatherings of people are not recommended because of the fast-spreading Covid-19 virus. While the celebrations must go on, we must always remind ourselves that adhering to the standing Covid protocols is critically important.

Let the blessed water give us strength and new opportunities. Let us find more reasons to celebrate our cultures and customs, but we must ensure that the festival and the celebrations do not become the reason for tragedies and sorrows.

Alcohol consumption is already one of the biggest health issues in the country. We spend millions every year in treating alcohol-related diseases. And the numbers continue to rise. Precious lives are lost needlessly.

On this festival day so, travel safe and enjoy the day with your loved ones so that we can celebrate such happy days for many more years to come in our lives.