I took a tour to the largest lake in China, Qinghai Hu, 150km from Xining, of cold and saltwater, with an area of 4600km², 360km of circumference and altitude of 3,200m, twenty-three rivers flowing into this lake, which gave the impression of being a sea. It has a rock islet called bird island, where thousands of birds of various species make their nests.
In the van there were only Chinese people. I was disguised as one, just as long as I didn’t open my mouth. But soon everyone started talking, asking and answering where they were from, so I talked about my Sino-Taiwanese-Brazilian origins.
The first stop was at a place where they sold Chinese medicine stuff, nothing could be more boring. The second stop, on Mount Sun and Moon, where it had a stupa at the top of the hill, quite green and there was a white yak (the hairy cow) to photograph or mount it. The third stop was a useless place to buy dried meat. Chinese tour is always a steal!
The lake, though gigantic, didn’t appeal to me. I didn’t pay for a ticket, I chose to sleep in the van. An aggressive Tibetan monk kept insisting on money, banging on the glass of the van, and wanted money at any cost, of course I didn’t give anything, who told him to follow monastic life?
Then we passed some dunes, and finally a pasture, no big deal. This tour was pretty boring. Back in the city in Xining, I visited the Grand Mosque, built in 1380 A.D., Chinese architecture occupied a large block.