Reflections on a Wandering Life.....
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Yesterday evening they fired up the kang in the yurt where the Swiss guy and I were sleeping. I'm glad, because Jane told me this morning that she had been cold last night. I was warm and toasty. They didn't keep the fire going all night, but the bricks were hot when we went to bed--that's the main thing. It was a little hard, though. A true North China kang is a brick bed covered with a layer of clay. It is firm (to say the least), but still quite comfortable. These guys forgot the clay and used mats instead. Didn't quite do it for me.
But this is a quiet, secluded place. Don't know how long it will stay that way, and it's a little depressing to see these folks, who, on one hand, complain about the growing Sinification of their "country," but who, on the other hand, are so heavily dependent on Chinese tourists for their livelihood. I hasten to add, though, that the feelings of the Mongolians in Inner Mongolia toward the Chinese do not seem to be as strong as those of the Tibetans. I guess they have been culturally integrated for quite a bit longer.