With major part of the trade with India being conducted from here, the border town of Phuntsholing is a hub of economic activity. The border is a gate which one can simply walk across. Most of the times papers are not checked, and there is a whole lot of novelty value in crossing from one side to the other on foot.

The gate and fence separates Phuntsholing from Jaigaon (Indian side border town). There is marked difference in look and feel of Phuntsholing compared to Jaigaon. While Jaigaon looks chaotic, with smaller buildings all over the place, there seems to be some semblance of order in Phuntsholing. The one striking feature is the architecture in Bhutan. All buildings have intricate designs on the parapets (usually includes the Thunder Dragon), and the uniquely Bhutan architecture.

After the initial “wow” and “amazing” and all the novelty value, we decided to take a stroll around Phuntsholing town. A river flows right through the town and we decided to follow it upstream. A little further upstream we saw a bunch of children (looking adorable) walking towards school. Curiosity got the better of us and we decided to take a look at the school.

Just outside we were greeted by a group of 4 children playing cricket with a makeshift bat, they happily greeted us with Kuzu Zangpo La and were quite curious about why we were there, where we’re from etc.

Bus station Phuntsholing

Bus station Phuntsholing

Cricket outside school

Cricket outside school

The little walk turned out to be quite an endearing experience with all the hi-fives, hand shakes and the conversations with little children in the school.

Children at the school in Phuntsholing

Children at the school in Phuntsholing

After the school we resumed the walk around town and….

They drive trucks in rivers!!

They drive trucks in rivers!!

...and have prayer wheels all over!

…and have prayer wheels all over!

…and are a generally happy lot…