At DeQing airport (yet another naming dilemna) my fixer tried lifting my backpack off my shoulders 4 times before asking me to check it in myself. His lifting effort was much the same as a wet fish hand-shake. Next he snatched up my ticket, passport and boarding pass and runs past the queue for security checking. Eventually his head pops out and he waves me down the line.
Before take off, I swear the stewardess said,
...seats in the upright position, and open your song book,- I half expected everyone to start chanting or more likely perform bad karaoke. Snow capped mountain ranges fill to the horizon out my window, many peaks are higher than our plane!
The Potala Palace just pops up as the bus pulls into the city. Like a cancer, the consuming anti-culture is rapidly homogenising Lhasa. Still, plenty of prayer flags flapping in the breeze, dudes wearing the holy marone and orange robes pushing past me, golden-capping and replacement teeth for sale amongst other assorted souvenirs from the metre-by-metre markets lining the Barkhor.
I've formed with a Danish and a French couple for our Land Cruiser trip starting tomorrow morning. I better cash myself up for the journey. On our return to Lhasa, hopefully Tibet will be quieter after the week of national holiday concludes, and visiting the sights might be less crowded...