Photographer's Note

Today I post my last photos from Bhutan, at least for now, and probably for ever. I have some more photos that I like, but they are probably not good enough for TE.

So I finish with a look at the future of Bhutan: the children. Meet Nume, Chudo,Tshering and Dorji , four pretty girls of class 5 D at Wangdue lower secondary school in Wangdue Phodrang town during the school year of 2003-04. Being in 5th grade should mean they were 10 years old. Now they are 25 and may have their own children.

I just wonder why only one of them is looking at me, or at least my camera. Were they just too shy or embarrassed, even though they had gladly agreed to pose? Or did someone else catch their attention on my side? Maybe my handsome young guide Utam? ;-)

Maybe the blurred background with its mixture of traditional and modern expressions of life will be more interesting to some than the nice girls.

Here is a larger version.

In most countries at least primary education is compulsory but sometimes only reaches a minority of the children in spite of the law. In Bhutan education is not compulsory but a large majority of the children go to school at least for a few years. The numbers have been rising steadily in the 2000's. The national statistics are dragged down by the poverty and isolation of many distant villages, where schools are few and facilities bad.

In the early 1990's only about 20 percent of the population of Bhutan could read or write, now the literacy rate is over 60 percent.

In the towns you can see most children wearing school uniforms, like these four girls. Usually the girls wear the traditional kira, while the boys use the gho.

I hope that Nume, Chudo,Tshering and Dorji received the copies of the photo I sent them. Unfortunately I didn't take the names of the two girls or the three boys you can see in the workshop.

As always all photos were scanned from Kodachrome slides.

Photo Information
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Additional Photos by Gert Holmertz (holmertz) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 9877 W: 514 N: 19094] (84357)
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