Blue Sky Kingdom
An Epic Family Journey to the Heart of the Himalaya
Bestselling travel writer Bruce Kirkby takes extreme measures to reduce screen time by travelling with his young family to a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in the Himalaya. Feeling stagnant, looking mindlessly at his phone for hours, flipping between emails and social media, ignoring his family and everything alive in his world, a thought struck Bruce Kirkby: this wasn't living; this wasn't him. This moment of clarity started a chain reaction which ended with a plan: he, his wife and their two young sons would jump on a shipping freighter and head for the Himalaya. To help with the financial logistics, they would document the adventure for the reality travel series Big Crazy Family Adventure. And so, trailed by a camera crew, Bruce, Christine, seven-year-old Bodi and three-year-old Taj travelled across the globe in search of tranquility and connection--their journey by canoe, freighter, rail and foot culminating in three months of reflection and meditation at a Buddhist monastery in the Zanskar valley, a remote appendage of the ancient Tibetan empire and one of the last places on earth where Tibetan Buddhism is still practised freely in its original setting. Exploring themes of modern distraction, the loss of ancient wisdom and Kirkby's personal coming-to-terms with Bodi's diagnosis on the autism spectrum, Blue Sky Kingdom is the remarkable tale of one family who fled distraction and ultimately found connection. With wit, insight and deep compassion, Kirkby tells a story that will deeply affect readers--all the while providing a glimpse into the lives of Buddhist monks and lamas in Ladakh, India, where ancient traditions and knowledge intersect with the modern world.
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