Location: Norbulingka, Sidpur

Waking up in Norbulingka is completely different from waking up in the monastery we were previously staying in. The walls are all decorated with dragons and griffins and magical creatures of the oriental sort. Most of the decor is handmade, and we got to tour the workshops where the artisans keep Tibetan traditional art alive! It was amazing to watch them work and to see some of the finished products. Most of the paintings take months to complete, and some of the statues take years. We had lunch at the restaurant here, and we nerded-out about Star Wars, which nearly half the group hasn’t seen! Afterward, Graham, Nigel, and I went with Jampa to the clinic to get Graham’s stitches removed. His hand is still in the process of healing, but it’ll make for a great story some day. We returned for a little bit of shopping at the store here, and then we all got fancy for a nice dinner at a cute little cafe/bookstore-type-thing, and again, nerded-out, this time about Lord of the Rings. So far, a pretty successful day. It’s a shame we have to leave so early in the morning tomorrow because there’s a lot more of this place I’d like to explore, but everyone is enjoying our last night here. And by enjoying I mean interpretive-dancing around to Jazz and Classic Rock in our PJ’s. Well, as the kids say these days, YOLO (you only live once).