My entertaining Tibetian tour guide – Tashi

Things I learnt from my guide Tashi today, whose name means happiness.

Tashi: Chinese people are suspicious of everything, so if you walk alone later in the afternoon, you should speak mandarin.

Me: LOL, Are you sure? Why you say that?

Tashi: You keep asking why. See? You’re suspicious too! 🤣 (Tashi 1 – me-0)

Tashi: You know what’s the weakness of the Tibetians?

Me: not suspicious enough?

Tashi: No!

Me: Alcohol?

Tashi: No!

Me: what??

Tashi: it’s hope.

Me: what do you mean?

Tashi: they hope too much and do nothing. Just hope.

Me: ahhhhh no wonder they pray so much and so devotedly. Because they hope. But that’s a good thing right? To have hope?

Tashi: it’s good when you do something. But they just hope for things to happen and do nothing. Just hope. No good.

Me: I agree.

(Tashi-2 Me-0)

Me: Why are there so many dentists in town?

Tashi: People don’t brush their teeth here.

Me: Why?

Tashi: so many nomads why will they brush teeth? They don’t have toothbrush or toothpaste

Me: but why your teeth so Nice?

Tashi: I’m a tour guide for foreigners. I need nice smile. 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

Walked past a guy who smiled at us and I asked if that’s a tour guide too?

Tashi: Yes! He was a very successful one.

Me: Why you say was? He no longer give tours?

Tashi: He was so successful he got so much money for tips that he got investigated and he has to declare everything and they still don’t believe so he decided to give it up and start a business instead.

Me: well at least he gets to keep the money and start his business. Oh! Maybe I shouldn’t tip you so much else you may get investigated too! ( I thought I squared off at this point!)

Tashi: You gonna tip me 500,000 CNY?

Daaaaamn (Tashi-3 Me-0) 😭

Me: How come there are so many KFCs in Lhasa? You all love fried chicken?

Tashi: Yes! But we also love America!

Me: Why? Is it because you have common enemy:China?

Tashi: no no no (uncomfortable laugh)

Me: ok ok. You didn’t say that. I did. Why do Tibetians love America?

Tashi: No matter how poor we are, we need to buy the iPhone.

Me: Why?

Tashi: it’s the only phone with Tibetian language in it.

Me: wow. Really?

(He then shows it to me on his iPhone!)

Me: so even xiaomi, huawei all don’t have?

Tashi: nope!

Me: Wow!! The power of Steve jobs! He got all your 6 million people.

Tashi: yes! Tibet is 1/5 of China.

Me: Wow really? That’s something I didn’t know.

Tashi is so entertaining and funny and he’s been a guide for the past 3 years.

He told me when I visited the nunnery that no lamas are left in Tibet. They’re all in India or Nepal. So, I really need to visit India for the Lamas.

He also told me Tibetians don’t hold a passport. They are not allowed to. So he’s never been anywhere else except Tibet. It’s quite sad isn’t it? I guess hope for them is this a good thing.

99% of the people in Tibet are Buddhist and 1% Muslims. The 1% speak mandarin fluently, helps to deliver the goods like cordyceps to the neighbouring states for money. Basically, they’re the good business people because he said Tibetians are not as hardworking.

Education and medical care is free in Tibet but food is not, thus they still have to work and make a living. We chanced upon a grown man asking for money in Tibetian in the teahouse where we were sat at and Tashi looked angry and upset and I asked what does the man want?

He said he’s got hands and legs and looks stronger and younger than me but he’s asking for money so I don’t give it. These people don’t want to work and it’s bad. If tourists give them, beggars will be a good profession which is no good. They are their parents do it and when kids grow up they become like him. It’s bad.

I agree with Tashi. So no money for beggars from me his trip unless they’re elderly or selling something.

Moments later, a girl was selling toothpaste. And I asked Tashi if he wants some. He says he has enough at home. but you can buy! 🤣

Can’t wait for tomorrow for more stories and facts!



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