"Xinjiang" translates from Mandarin to mean "new land," and boy is it new. We've spent the last two days in Kashgar, 400 km from the Pakistani border, and Toto we are NOT in China anymore. It is amazing and crazy and mind blowing, the sort of place we've never been before, the world of Islam writ in Chinese characters. Also, the sun comes up at 8:30 AM and sets at 11 PM, due to Chinese country unity which means the whole nation is on one time. My parents and I are having a blast.
Tomorrow we go to Urumqi, the capital. Maybe there will be more time to write then, but otherwise when I get back to Kunming there will be massive updates.