Up and Down, More from Tibet

More from Tibet. (Continued from my last blog.)  Next time, I’ll take you east to Sichuan.

The first photo is a view taken while flying over the Himalayas from Chengdu, China to Lhasa, Tibet. The flight was preceded by an airline employee entering the plane and spraying insecticide down the aisle while we, the unsuspecting passengers, sat helplessly belted in our seats. No explanation was given. Perhaps SW China Airlines advertises insect-free flying as a bonus?

The next photo was taken from the area in front of the Jokang temple in Lhasa, where the huge incense burners create many challenges, not the least to one’s lungs. As if the intensity of the sunlight at the high altitude isn’t enough, try getting good shots through all the smoke. We were told they were burning juniper branches at the time I took this photo.


Next, scenes from a thriving market. I have to say, I’m never sad to be a vegetarian.


Check out the traditional Tibetan architecture behind the market stalls.

The next photos show the library inside the Potala palace. I was physically accosted by a Tibetan monk when I held up my camera to take this picture. He began to yell at me in a most unholy way, demanding I pay him ten dollars for the privilege of taking the photo. I nearly told him where to put the money but in the end, I paid. What you do not see is the heavy coating of dust and general lack of care toward the beautiful and ostensibly valued contents of this room. More on that in a moment.

A view of the White palace part of the Potala.

I’m an artist as well as a writer, so I made a point of visiting a small temple which is famous for having old, illustrated manuscripts. And they did have them, beautiful pages from the 8th century, I was told. The sad part is that they were being stored in a long display cabinet which had a top of cracked glass. So yeah, the monks have a beef about their treasures being stolen by the Chinese, but to western eyes they aren’t preserving them. I guess they can do what they want with their own stuff, eh?

Outside of Lhasa, on the road that goes to Qinghai province in China, there are breathtaking views near the Yangbaji Moutains.
The moutains here are 21,000 feet high. And on the road that goes to Xigaze, more gorgeous sights, including a small village.

We ran into a family of  yak herders and shared our picnic lunch with them. They were especially interested in our hardboiled eggs. Since the eggs weren’t really boiled enough to qualify for that name, I was glad to give mine away. They offered us some of what they had but, like I said, I don’t eat meat. (Not sure what kind it was, dried something or other.) And now, I’ll leave you with a moo, or whatever the yaks say in Tibetan.

Mickey Hoffman is the author of two mystery novels published by Second Wind Publishing. The latest is Deadly Traffic.

~ by mickeyhoffman on September 24, 2012.

2 Responses to “Up and Down, More from Tibet”

  1. Such wonderful photos! It’s amazing to me the places you have been the things you have seen.

  2. […] Up and Down, More from Tibet […]

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