For a very long time I have dreamed of traveling through Tibet. But this journey has always been in the distant future, when one can travel freely and freely across the country.
Also in 2014, all of Tibet is occupied by China. And me: in the middle.
Sorry, the oxigen is out of order. As this crunching announcement in the train at about 5000 meters penetrates my ear, I lie mentally fogged on my book spine-wide platform and concentrated my last senses to avoid involuntary stagediving on the Chinese karaoke group below me.
In front of me is a monk with his mouth wide open, holding out his tongue to me. I blink like a dazed yak into the blinding sun, vacillating between outraged horror and amazement. "Show him your tongue!", The gently demanding voice of my guide Tsenam tears me from my confused thoughts and after a short hesitation, I push my dust-dry tongue obediently to the daylight.