Somrak is from Thailand; a place sufficiently packed with humanity to make some parts of California's urban interstices seem like wilderness. She grew up in the "country", but had lived most of her life, by the time I met her, in Bangkok; as tightly populated a town as seems possible. As a result, I think, she has a very different take on crowds.
A few years ago we drove to San Diego County by way of the back side of the Sierras. We went through Panamint Valley, where we saw only one other vehicle. She turned to me and said, "there are no trees and no people; are you crazy?" She is nervous when there are no other people around. This could be a problem exploring the American Southwest.
I, however, find the press of humanity sometimes disturbing. I'm the one who revels in empty country. I hope to return from our trip to Grand Canyon by way of Utah and US Hwy 50. I suppose I may have to relent and expect to return by way of Las Vegas on the freeway.
Love, and perigrination,