Posts Tagged ‘potala palace


Day 13 Revisited: Phenomeblonde!

How could I have forgotten about the phenomeblonde moment that occurred upon leaving the Potala Palace?  As if these moments were…*gasp*…unimportant.  What a profane thought.

The battered leather journal lists this as the sixteenth stranger photo-shoot of the trip, a number far beyond anything I was expecting.



Day 13 part 2: Jokhang Temple

After Potala Palace we toured Jokhang Temple.  It is considered the most important temple in Tibetan Buddhism, so pilgrims from all over Tibet make the journey to Lhasa at least once in their lives to prostrate themselves here.  The pilgrimage itself must be back-breaking work, considering the Tibetan plateau is one of the most remote places in the world and not many can afford to make the trip in a 4-Runner.  So many people trek on foot, stopping along the way to meditate and pray.  The most devout will travel the last miles on their hands and knees and stomachs, performing prostrations by kneeling with their arms in the air then sliding their hands on the ground in front of them to lie flat.  What I would think of as an excruciatingly slow and painful ordeal, these pilgrims probably consider transcendent.

I’ve re-posted this picture because 1) I think it’s awesome, and 2) that white building on the left horizon is the temple.



Day 13 part 1: Potala Palace

We finally have our fourth tour member!  He’s a Chinese man from Taiwan who studies immunology at UCLA (small world!).  (If I remembered all that correctly.)   He’s very nice, if a tad incapable of filtering his…enthusiasm.  While we are pretty flexible, James seems a bit more…aggressive.

We went to the Potala Palace in the morning.  It seemed very important to get there at a designated time, I think because you have to reserve your entrance time beforehand and you only have a limited  duration to actually be in the palace.  But the whole time we were there, I couldn’t figure out how anyone would know your entrance time.  I think it was all a hoax.  Even so, James wasn’t the picture of patience when we wanted to take some shots of the facade of this incredible building.  It looks ancient and harsh and foreboding and vaguely Siberian – built on a little mountain so it towers over the city that grew around it.  I would say that it is one of the most impressive buildings I’ve ever seen.

Potala Palace.  You have to walk up all those switchbacking steps, so it took a while because it’s like we have emphysema and mono in this altitude.

More More More! So much more!!


Day 10: Wandering the Streets of Lhasa

Potala Palace

Since we arrived in Lhasa several days before our tour is scheduled to start, and we can’t begin the tour now because we have to wait for one more person, we are going to spend several days just wandering around.  And since we have to be on a tour to even be here, and the tour company wants to get money for these days, we’re going to have our tour guide, Tsering, with us.  I guess.  I don’t really know what we’re gonna be doing.

More words! More Photos! JUMP!!

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