Monday, May 21, 2012

Day in Lhasa, part 2

At the risk of seeming like one of those people who trap guests in the living room for hours at a time to show slides of recent travels, I do want to take you to the Barkhur Market and the Sera Monastery in Lhasa for just a bit.

Stalls of one part of Barkhur Market (note construction on right, old Lhasa being torn down for new construction)

Wider view, Barkhur Market

The Barkhur Market is too much to take in in one stay. Stalls upon stalls of fruits, hanging meat, bright colored yarn, live birds, necklaces, furniture, fabrics, trinkets of all kinds. 

Jinpa took me to one interior place, perhaps with genuine Tibetan goods. I didn't bring enough yuan to buy, but maybe later... 

I walked back to the hotel on my own.

At 3:00 Jinpa and Mr. Lee [our driver] took me to the Sera Monastery on the edge of Lhasa. At one time there were 5000 monks there--now 500. There's a sad, run-down look to the place. A casualty. No money is coming its way for repairs. The architecture is still beautiful and it was hard not to imagine the thousands of monks who had once lived there. Jinpa told me it was where Tibetans could get an education.

As I look at these photos now I remember feeling like a newborn in Tibet. The world was so brand new to me.  In my regular days I don't see half of what's in front of me because I'm so accustomed to looking at it. When it's all new, it's also hard to see it all because there's just so much.

As I think about this trip, one thing I'd like to bring away is that feeling of seeing the world new, seeing my world like a traveler. What new details would I see that I haven't noticed for a while? What sounds would stand out? What would I find wondrous?

Potala Palace at night from my Lhasa hotel room

(Continued) Getting on the road


  1. I am absolutely loving these Tibet posts and your thoughts about them. Breath-taking! Thank you so much for posting these.

  2. Thanks, Jo. It's both fun and a little odd to go back through my journals. Makes me wish I could do it again, with the knowledge of having done it once.

  3. I love the market photos. We have nothing of that magnitude here, and I am glad to experience it through your camera lens and description.

  4. I'd love to get back to the market, when it wasn't so brand new to me. I think I could take in more of it.