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Xinjiang (shin-jyawng) 

Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region

Karakoram Highway

Karakoram Highway is the highest paved road in the world.  

Sayram Lake

Sayram Lake is the highest alpine lake in Xinjiang located in the Tian Shan mountains.  Ethnic Kazakh predominantly reside here.


Kashgar was a major outpost on the Silk Road.  Last stop heading east before entering the deadly Taklamakan Desert.

At one point in Kashgar, I ended up forgetting my passport on a bus.  I immediately recognized I didn't have it as I watched the bus pull away.  The bus didn't even drop us off at the bus station, just a random location in the city that was convenient for the driver.  I didn't have a ticket stub or anything, just recognition of the guy's face and the time of departure from my original destination.  A full day of deliberations with Uyghur bus drivers, attendants, and taxi drivers and to no avail, it was clear I'd have to wait until the morning to make further progress.  The next morning, I was finally able to track down the "big boss" at one of the two bus stations.  Dude was a red-faced Han Chinese gentleman who just emanated that doggedness that all really shrewd Chinese businessmen seem to have.  Unlike commuter rail services in the states, public transportation is a state owned enterprise in China.  He represented something far beyond station master.  Around there, he was 9/10th's of the law.  I spent a full day and half running around the city trying to find my passport, and talking to this man for five minutes yielded the phone number of the bus driver who found my passport AND someone who would drive me to the bus I was on the day before.  My idiocy aside, kinda funny to think about. 

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