For the recent 12 days Xinjiang holidays, I kept a diary on the highlights by jotting down accounts of our travel. It was just incomprehensible scribbles at the back of the copies of itinerary I printed out.
Margaux kept a diary too. A very different one. One that gives you the virtual tour of the day. In the earlier leg of our travel, before she fell sick due to the intense 45 C heat, Margaux would sit quietly in the front row, behind the driver’s seat, happily inking away. She had observed keenly and drew out the characters, all the participants of this tour, less the driver and local guide. I am quite sure you can easily spot Stevie from her sketches. Not because he was the sole thorn among the roses but she truly depicted him well.
As far as kiddo was concerned, the desert was her ultimate Xinjiang. She has arrived. Her face lit with joy and her light little legs carried rapid pace to conquer. I was the first to challenge the sand dunes on an upward climb and she trailed from behind. Never squirming nor resigning. She raced ahead.
As it is summer, there is longer daylight. We often started our mornings from 9.30 am and would not be checking into a new destination hotel till 10 pm at night. In the evening, night falls into complete darkness only at 9 pm. We arrived Kumtagh Desert late in the evening at about 6.30 pm and did not have enough time to complete the 3 scenic points intended. Had we known that we would not be in time to catch the camel ride, we would have stayed on at this very first scenic spot and sat here awaiting the beautiful sunset from here.