Many years back one morning, in the far north of China, I hitchhiked from Yinchuan, in Ningxia province to the border of Inner Mongolia. Nothing but wilderness and crumbling ruins of a wall (part of the series of walls that make the great wall). There were no tourists here, hardly any traffic, and the landscape was all mine to wander about. I thought about all the people who had traveled though here to the west along the silk route. Places like these where the travelers may have camped – someone makes a fire and that becomes the resting places of several caravan headed in different directions – Persian, Koreans, Chinese and a dozen other nationalities that no longer exist.
Wish I could go back in time to find out what stories they exchanged. These days the nearest I can get to the silk route camp experience is the huddlespaces I find in airports – around power plugs and wi-fi points.This is one place, strangers become friends, share chargers, only momentarily, but still friends.