I told myself that I should jot down some notes before I forget about Xinjiang.
I started thinking what have impressed me most about this very vast and diverse area up in the north west extremity of China.
I can vividly remember:
The clouds, some fantastic and silky; the clear blue sky.
The swiftly flowing rivers, with rapids.
The blue lakes; tranquil and clear. The enchanting reflections in the lakes.
The endless grasslands.
The special landforms – high mountains, rugged rocks, colored rocks ( Yangdan).
The snow capped mountains, areas of ice.
The place is generally over 2000m in elevation and have an Alpine setting.
The horses, camels, goats, sheep, dogs, cows.
The people – Eurasian looking, with a lot of Caucasian features in the face, the beautiful ladies and the handsome young man. Smiling kids with goats as their pets.
The beautiful sunset shining on the meanders of the rivers.
Beautiful villages with their timber huts.
The flowers – daffodils, canola, lavender, chrysanthemum etc.
The pine trees and fruit bearing trees.
The Mongolian yurts, the herdsmen, their cars and motorcycles.
The eagles, swans , other birds, dragonflies.
Their traditional food, with lots of oil and chili, the kebabs, lambs served in three styles.
The long coach / bus / electric cart travels. The trips on the boats. The cable car. horse pulled carts.
Strict speed control on the highway and vigilant security control at the airport, hotel, scenic areas, restaurants. Limited Wifi and almost no WhatsApps and Gmail.
Stinky toilets except near Karamay where they are rich with their oil.
Big differences in day / night temperatures. Sudden rain and coldness in the highland areas and in the grasslands.
Beautiful performance – of flute, by a band and a male dancer. Wine tasting / greeting tradition.
Yes, a day would go by mixing some of the items together.
My days in Xinjiang are made of these.