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Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self. - Cyril Connolly
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Adventures
I'm taking tomorrow off to visit the Chinese Embassy in DC. The visa office is open from 10:00 - 3:00 PM, and for the mere price of $130, I can have an interview and get permission in the form of a pretty stamp on my newly minted passport to visit their country for 20 days.

Normally, a travel agent would submit the passport for me as part of the fee for a trip, but because I am going to China as a private citizen, not as part of an organized tour, I have to show up in person, or pay a visa agent some exorbitant sum to do it on my behalf. Besides, I think it will be interesting.

The itinerary for the trip is beginning to take final form. I know that I will visit all the highlights of Beijing during the first 6 days. Places like Tianemen Square, the Forbidden City, the Great Wall, Mings Tomb, the Olympic venues, and the Summer Palace. I also know that I will fly to X'ian to see the Terra Cotta Warriors for a day or two at some point, but we just got our detailed itinerary for the six day trip along the northern route of the Silk Road to the western border of China with Kyrgyzstan.





We start at the Mogao Grottoes, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Dunhouang in Inner Mongolia which date back to the 4th century. Then to the city of Turpan situated 505 feet below sea level in the Gobi Desert, the lowest and hottest place in China, with an ancient underground irrigation system the Romans would envy, and which rivals only the Great Wall as a feat of engineering. From there, we head to what is measurably the most landlocked city on earth, Urumqui, so that we can catch a flight across the Takla Makan Desert Basin to the border of Kyrgyzstan and the world famous markets of Kashgar. Finally, a trip into the Himalayan foothills and Lake Karakul at nearly 10,000 feet above sea level, it promises to be a real adventure.
posted by Broadsheet @ 4:13 PM  
2 Editorial Opinions:
  • At August 23, 2007, Anonymous Bonanza JellyBean said…

    You know, my friend from skinnylegsandall.blogspot.com just came back from China. You should definitely email him and ask him for some traveler advice.

     
  • At August 24, 2007, Blogger Malnurtured Snay said…

    Y'know the second you walk onto the embassy's grounds, you're technically in China. They should make you talk to a visa agent for permission to walk onto the embassy grounds first! :)

     
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