May "vacation" to Korla!

We've been invited to visit some friends in Korla for the past five years....and we are finally taking this opportunity to GO! Planning a road trip in this area of the globe is a bit different than what you might expect. Actually, you probably shouldn't "expect" anything! We booked tickets on the bus - and set out at 7:30am hoping to arrive 6 hours later!

We couldn't catch a taxi to the bus station - so we hopped in a "black taxi" (an unofficial civilian taxi) and he just-so happened to have the day free. He offered to drive us all the way to Korla in his personal car! His price was cheaper than our reserved tickets - so we made a quick change of plans. He was such a nice guy too! ....but we had no idea of the adventures that were to come! The nice thing about having your own driver is that you can stop for snacks, take potty breaks, and see more of the desert if we want to explore! We can roll the windows down...and enjoy the hot breeze. Our first stop was to refuel at a roadside station, which was more like a construction zone.

We bought some snacks for the road...
...and got some of the wiggles out!
Most of the drive was flat desert or this amazing rock/mountainous roads!

Right as we got out of the mountains our driver began driving kinda strange. He would accelerate, and then coast for awhile. We weren't sure if he was trying to save gas or something. Then all of a sudden he pulls over.... his car was overheating!

We were basically stranded in the middle of the desert highway for about an hour. It was hot. Not a single breeze...so we tried to help our driver figure out the problem....and let the girls play in the sand & pebbles on the side of the road. There wasn't much we could do!

I love that the girls found ways to have fun with rocks & empty water bottles.
I just took pictures of the silliness!

We were back on the road shortly, but driving slowly to make sure the engine didn't overheat again. We stopped again to refuel and cool off with some popsicles. The heat of the desert is no joke!

Justin found an old motorcycle cart that was calling his name.

Traveling with our little family is never without adventure!

We kept on going....and 8.5 hours later we arrived at our destination! I think next time we will take the bus?? It was an adventure for sure....but we are certainly glad to be with friends for the weekend! Here's a picture of our driver: His name is Li, but he requested that we call him "Bruce Li" (Lee). hehehe.