This year, Norlha is opening a small store on the Barkhor, in old Lhasa, in addition to our flagship store in a quieter area nearby. The Barkhor, which circles the celebrated Tsuklhakhang, Lhasa’s main temple, is still the gathering point of pilgrims and the heartbeat of Tibetan trade. In the past, people brought produce and commodities from all over the Plateau and set up stalls, alternating between religious devotions and the need to earn their living. Traders brought goods from beyond and one could find fedoras from Italy, cloth from America and perfume from France.
Nowadays, most pilgrims come to Lhasa in winter, when herding or farming is at a lull, and where the sun is warm, at least compared to the windswept Northern plains. One finds everything a Tibetan would want on the Barkhor; yak butter, dried meat, medicinal herbs, religious objects, thermos bottles, mixers for making Tibetan tea, traditional hats, hand woven chuba material from Southern Tibet and much more. It is the meeting of two worlds.. and two minds.