There were two known types of elixir; for immortality or Jingzhou Travel merely for prolonging life. The ingredients were sulphur and quicksilver, but the secret was their Jingzhou Travel exact ratio, and many rulers (including one of the Khans) died from drinking a harmful combination. When Marco Polo reached Kunming he finished writing up his findings and rested in the town’s peace and comfort. Kunming is subtropical, its flower gardens abound with exotic plants, but it’s not a really pretty town because of extensive concrete modernisation and bicycle travel is as hectic as everywhere else in China. In one street market I came to the dental section where the displays of teeth in jars, plastercast samples, and foot-operated dental drills awaited customers. No chairs, patients have to stand.
The landscapes of the M1 are placed through extraordinary and spectacular events as well as the everyday and seemingly mundane movements of individuals and groups of travellers. Landmarks visible from the motorway or individual bridges, stretches of road and service areas may assume special meanings for individuals or families, while prominent public, media events have enfolded and placed the spaces of the motorway into particular associations in the minds of the public, as well as in more durable texts.
Geographer Tim Edensor (2003) also argues that driving produces affective and imaginative connections and pleasures. It is the routine nature of commuting that opens up the possibilities of experience to other stimuli and to sensual, imaginative, experience (2003: 166). Urban driving, including on motorways, provides a range of experiences for drivers and passengers, both banal and exhilarating: