October 17, 2018, 6:02 AM
It was October 2005. While visiting in Yinchuan, Ninxia, in northern China, I had an unexpected opportunity to travel to Inner Mongolia. The invitation was from Karen, a visiting teacher from Wales whom I had recently met while walking in a local park. Of course I said yes, and in eager anticipation we soon boarded an overnight train for a 9½-hour ride to Hohhot, the capital and cultural center of Inner Mongolia, where our adventure in riding waves of good luck and bad luck began.