Drove from Lhasa to Everest base camp on the Tibet side via the so-called Friendship Highway in 2001. It was neither friendly nor was it a highway. In fact, there were stretches that didn’t resemble a road at all. At one point we encountered a checkpoint with two lonely guards and a single-bar gate blocking the way. Our papers were not in order so someone had to drive back to get the proper stamp or whatever. Some of us stayed at the checkpoint and played hacky sack. Eventually, one of the guards joined us. It was as fun as it could be given that it was a two-hour waste of time. At one point we reached a pass that was well over 5k meters above sea level. We stopped to take pictures and my wife and I danced the Viennese waltz for about 30 seconds and then were were too winded to continue. Mountains appeared on the horizon, one bigger than the next. Our reference to which one was Everest was a 10 RMB bank note with a picture of Everest on the “tails” side. We got to base camp late in evening and got the worst rooms in the monastery, which was still better than sleeping in the ancient Landcruisers. As we dragged our roller luggage over the rocks to the rooms, a couple of Brits who had somehow biked to the base camp looked at us with great suspicion as they took drags from the cigarettes (this is at about 15k feet!). We had about half an hour of day light left so we took pictures standing in front of Mt. Everest. In the middle of the night, I had to go to bathroom and had to go to the outhouse. There, a monk hit me up for some toilet paper so now I can say I gave toilet paper to a monk in the monastery at the foot of Mt. Everest. That was just one day in our Tibetan road trip. It was fucking magical.