I am set to leave for Kazakhstan tomorrow to begin doing the travel phase of research for my next book on the New Silk Road — the proposed trade routes from China to Europe that are currently being rolled out. I should be visiting Almaty in Kazakhstan, the Horgos free trade zone on the border with China, as well as Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. For Ghost Cities I knew I was in for an extremely deep and difficult project, but the scope of my focus was limited to a single country. For On the New Silk Road I’m looking at project that takes in an incredible swath of geography that includes the west of China, all of Central Asia, Pakistan, the Middle East (possibly), Russia, Turkey, the Netherlands . . .
It’s going to be fun.