Episode 080: You’ve Got To Pick A Pocket Or Two

It’ll Stunt Your Growth. Today we had some memorable experiences with a bunch of kids. The image of 6-year-old children smoking is something I will not soon forget, but more about that in a second.

The day started off with an hour or so in front of Tashilunpo Monastery so Scott and I could get the last of our photos and video of this incredible place. Out in front of the entrance gate to the monastery were a few tables with people selling various trinkets, etc. Some katas, or traditional gifts of white scarves caught Scott’s eye and he decided to buy a few. As he was paying for them he was accosted by a pack of Tibetan kids. They all held out their hands for some money and when Scott politely said no they took matters into their own hands-litteraly-and began to rifle through the cargo pockets in his pants!

Now, they didn’t know that Scott is a law enforcement officer back home and highly trained in offensive and defensive maneuvers. He felt one of the kids put a hand in a pocket and quickly grabbed the little hand and gently, playfully put the kid in an arm bar. Let me tell you, the kid was not expecting something like that. His mother watched the whole thing from nearby and was laughing and enjoying the show immensely.

Later we were getting lunch in a little town down the road from Shigatse and we saw another group of children with their faces pressed up against the window. They looked to be between 6 and 10 years old and were all smoking. I’ll never forget that. Especially the little boy alternating between sucking on a jawbreaker and puffing expertly on a cigarette.

My childhood was quite different than what these kids live.

Jon Miller

Total Running Time: 19:39

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Jon Miller