In Bhutan, we generally believe that there is the right time for everything. If that hour of destiny does not strike, nothing will happen even if the situation pushes you to the furthest edge of your life. But if the right time has come, nothing can stop you from facing the reality no matter how bitter it might be. I think because of this belief, we can cope even with the loss of our loved ones quite easily. If we are not destined to die at that particular hour, even death seems to forget its purpose. I have faced a couple of situations where I could have been either injured or even killed. People may call it a luck but I believe that the right time for me to die had not come then. Following are a few episodes of my life during which luck was in my favour.
Encounter with a scorpion
I think I was about eight-years-old when I was nearly stung by a scorpion. I was living with my father, my younger brother and my elder half-sister in a place called Gai Khurey above Rinchending. My father was working for a company that produced commercial charcoals to be supplied to industries across Bhutan. We were living in a temporary shelter since my father’s job frequently required him to move from place to place. One night while trying to sleep, I did not feel comfortable at all. I could feel something solid stuck to my back as I tried to lie down. I tried to reach back with my hands and see what it was, but my hands wouldn’t go far enough to reach the spot. After a couple of failed attempts, I asked my father to check out what it was. As he removed my shirt, he was literarily shocked to find a scorpion stuck on my back. He carefully removed it and killed it. He said I was lucky because I did not get stung by it. During those days, people used to say that there was no treatment for scorpion stings. So I have come to understand that when the right time has not come, even the predacious creatures choose to remain harmless.
Escaping a speeding truck by a mere chance
Before moving to Gai Khurey which is above Rinchending, I and my family were living in Bunagu near Chima Kothi under Chukha Dzongkhag. My father had the same job: to fell trees and produce commercial charcoals. Our house was located just above the highway and I and my siblings would regularly come down to the road to play. As a child, I was very mischievous. I would often challenge my elder half-sister that I could outrun a moving vehicle but she wouldn’t believe me. When vehicles approached, I would often run across the road to the other side and run back before the vehicle reached the spot and I would proudly present myself as a champion. During one such demonstration, I saw a heavy truck speeding down the highway and I challenged my sister that I could cross the road and reach back before it crosses my way. When the truck reached a challengeable distance, I ran to the other side of the road with all my might but when I was running back to complete my promised ordeal, the truck had got too close. I could even feel the hot breath of the engine as the driver struggled to apply emergency brakes. By the time the truck stopped, I was just across its front bumper. My sister yelled at me from the roadside and as somebody jumped out of the truck probably to lash me, I and my sister ran down the village path and escaped.
Trapped in a whirlpool
By the time I was 7 or 8 years old, I was helping parents full-time in the village because I had not gone to school. I and my elder half-sister would regularly go to guard the orange orchards against monkeys and herd cattle. We would be there to help our parents whenever they needed us. One day while returning from the orchard, I and my sister decided to stop at Sibo Khola, the popular brook on the edge of the village. Since it was hot, we decided to swim in the river although we never knew how to do it. We just dipped ourselves inside the water and played like little frogs. Soon I had unknowingly maneuvered towards to the center of the river and I was stuck in a whirlpool. I was terribly afraid. I thought I was going to die as the water began to twist my body and suck me in. I cried for help as my body kept spinning with the whirlpool but my sister who was equally terrified was trying to run away instead. Fortunately, I could finally catch hold of a rock nearby and pulled myself out of the current below. I never went back to swim in that river thereafter.
All the above incidents happened when I had sight. Even after losing sight, many circumstances have pushed me to the edge of my life but I always believe that there is right time for everything. Having said so, it does not mean that life is predictable. Nothing is certain in this world. I believe that there is right time for everything but we won’t know when that right time will come. So to be on the safer side, I think it would be important to remain prepared for any possible misfortune all the time. Whether your right time has come or not depends on your fate.