Study Group Wednesdays!

I look forward to my Wednesdays!

Not just the interactions with like minded people, not only the array of delectable treats, but also the learning that comes from these beautifully pared-down talks.

Kabul and Kandahar and their respective roles in the trade along the Silk Route, was our first talk for the day. The story of Kabul was interesting– a city which has seen so many changes of hands that it has never had prolonged peace. The geographic location of such cities, writes the destiny of their histories.
Silk Road(비단길) Silk Road(비단길) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption]
That was followed by a presentation on the many exchanges along the Silk Route. Silk, Paper, Gunpowder, Cartography, Astronomy, the concept of Zero, Religion– and enchantingly Tea and Rhubarb!
silk silk (Photo credit: sarahluv)[/caption]


The last talk was a thoroughly intriguing one on the Romany people and their origins. It was an eye opener for me, to find out that the gypsies of Europe were probably “taken” by Alexander’s armies and by subsequent conquering forces, from western India- only to lose all sense of identity. Unaccepted by their adopted land and unaware of their original homeland!
In S’s words, “They are, uniquely, not only a people without a homeland, but without even a dream of a homeland. Their dreams, and their songs, and their stories, are of the road that has no end.”

A people that have been reviled and despised for over 2000 years!

A wry African proverb sums up the thought :
“Until lions have historians, stories of the hunt shall always glorify the hunters.’’



  1. So exciting to read about silk road since I did this trip a few years ago with my family when we were in China. We spent two weeks starting from Lan Zhou and tracing the route until Kashghar. Places like Dun Huang, Turpan, Jia yu guan on the way are some of the places I will always remember. Wish I knew about so many other things about silk road that your group is studying and sharing. Excited and looking forward to read more.