XinJiang Dancing and KTV...
I know there are a lot of photos from last night but I didn't take my own camera, which makes me a bit afraid to see what photos other people have.
A big group of us started out, late of course because we can never be on schedule, by going out for XinJiang food at one of the best little joints in town. Lots of chuar (beef tendon/ligament and lamb on a stick) followed by two huge steaming plates of potato and beef, and potato and chicken. It's definitely not Chinese food, and reminds me of a big spicy casserole from back home. It's served with long flat noodles and nang bread that you can dip into the sauce.
After dinner a large group of students at another table, from XinJiang and studying at the local uni, pulled out a guitar and started singing a bunch of traditional (drinking?) songs in Uighur. It was really cool to hear, and us foreigners thought it was great (I'll see if the video turned out, and maybe I can post it). One thing led to another and I ended up asking them in Chinese if they knew any English songs. So the Laowai and the XinJiang joined forces to take over the restaurant and belt out a few classics (with the few remaining Han Chinese taking photos on their camera mobile phones). After a few songs we were going to head off to KTV (karaoke) and we were almost ready to go when the guys called me back. They had cleared a few tables out of the way to make a bit of a dance floor in the restaurant and invited us to dance to a traditional XinJiang folk song. How could we say no?
We eventually made it to the KTV joint for a great round of songs (mainly in English), though Bob and I sang a song in Chinese for good measure (that one I posted way back in November). It was too much fun and a shame we had to leave KTV to make curfew while the night was still young and the songs were just getting started.