I arrived in Beijing China this morning and went out on a sight seeing tour today. Really enjoyed it despite the jetlag, saw Tiananmen Square, The Forbidden City and the Great Wall. We finished off with a Chinese Tea drinking ceremony which was great. All lovely to do but missing my family so much that my feet are dragging a bit and can’t shake the sadness. A couple of meetings tomorrow with Austrade and the Chinese Animal Agriculture Association then it’s onboard the Trans Siberian Express to Ulaanbaatar Mongolia on Tuesday. In Mongolia I will be travelling for 3 weeks with Jane Addison who is an Australian doing her PhD on land tenure, rangeland condition and herder livelihoods in the Gobi Desert. I hope to gain an insight into the long-term affects of nomadic herds on arid rangelands as well as experiencing another culture. Having a bit of trouble getting my head in the right space for the job and admit the fire in my belly has been just about extinguished with grief but I’m hoping a few weeks in the Gobi Desert will clear things up for me and help me focus on the job at hand. This trip couldn’t have come at a better time and I’m glad I have the opportunity to pull myself together before the full on Global Focus Program starts next month. Emotionally I’ve got a long way to go and a short time to get there but the support I’ve had has been humbling and success will be forever measured by the quality and quantity of people who support me when the bottom falls out of my world. So I’ll head into this next stage of my Nuffield program with a quote provided by a friend: “Look famous, be legendary, appear complex, act easy, radiate presence, travel light, seem a dream, prove real.” But in reality I’ll just be a bit of an unfocused mess and try to get through each day.