Archive | October, 2011

Seeking a lost horizon

1 Oct

Today marks one month since I arrived in China. Weird. It feels like so much more time has passed.

Ramen selection, the most important travel preparation

Today also marks my departure for Tibet. I’ll be roughing it, traveling 52 hours by train from Shanghai to Lhasa. My accommodations are hard sleeper, which means I have one (somewhat comfortable) bed in a column of three. I expect it will be, if not fun, a very interesting ride.

This is one of two “Golden Weeks” on the calendar when almost all Chinese have time off. Tens of millions of migrants who work during the year in factories on China’s east coast return home to the western provinces. For those who left children behind, to be raised by grandparents, this is one of the few opportunities they have for family time.

Looking at the Shanghai-Lhasa route, there will certainly be migrants on the train. If they can take seriously a Caucasian who speaks Chinese, it would be fascinating to talk with them. More on that (and more) when I return…