Newcastle Lyon Sonvillier Dresden Berlin Petersburg Chita Moscow Helsinki Amsterdam Newcastle

In progress.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Into Outer Mongolia

I am currently on a detour from the Bakunin-Kropotkin route, into Mongolia with 4 others who did the conservation camp on Baikal. Tomorrow we're heading west to camp for a few days in an unknown place. It's 2 days away because we were advised that wild camping in the general vicinity of Ulan Bator and its nearest national parks is too dangerous. There's still marauders about.

Approaching the border I read about Kropotkin's bluffs and successful manouevres to get past official obstructions and into Chinese Manchuria. I myself was, strictly speaking, in breach of my Russian visa because the conservation organisation I camped with had failed to notify the right authorities that I was there. But another Austrian girl was in worse straits because someone had stolen her visa on the train.

We had 8 hours wait on the Russian side of the border, but in the end the only real (as opposed to imagined) difficulties we faced were the heat and the boredom. My registration slip was wordlessly collected and even the Austrian girl was okay - it was the Mongolian border guard's birthday.

So I'm no longer making notes for the anarchist pilgrimage zine, but will take them up again when I return into Russia, on the 17th September, when I mean to take another train straight away to Chita and the Amur River (where Kropotkin had his first job, and Bakunin escaped exile).

Until then, I am still drawing a diary, which I will probably post here, but there isn't much anarchist history in it.

The only way I am continuing the heritage of Bakunin is by borrowing money off people - the bank has stopped my card and so I've had to buy tickets etc... with the cash of new acquaintances. Bakunin continued to do it into his old age, and never paid back. But I think I'm too middle class for that.

Back in Ulan Bator on the 13th September.

No comments:

Post a Comment