A Travellerspoint blog

The Gift That Is Given & a New Beach To Play

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya,

Argh it’s a dogs life! Another day, another beach on which to play!

This evening finds my very tired and sore feet in the small coastal city of Weihai and what a beautiful leafy green city it is. Located at the eastern tip of Shandong Peninsula, Weihai lies across from both South Korea and Japan. It is a well known port and tourist city and has been honored as "The garden city" of China. It is about 60kms from Yantai and it is the site of China’s most humiliating naval defeat when the entire Qing Navy (armed with advanced European warships) was annihilated by a much smaller Japanese fleet in 1895.

Sadly Luo Wei and I said good bye yesterday morning as she left Yantai and caught the train home to Kaifeng city to be with her mother for a few days before then heading back to Xian city to begin work.

It is doubtful we will see each other until at least October. There is much more I can say as there is more to it than I willing to write about just yet.

I spent a sad day yesterday full of self pity resting and reading in bed as it was hot and overcast outside and I wasn’t in much of a mood for crowds and being overcharged. Last night I ventured out into the glitzy streets of Yantai and spent hours window shopping in the Shopping District along Nan Dajie. On the way back to the hotel I stopped for some bbq sticks and a few too many beers to lighten my self pity and my dark mood.

This morning when I woke I thought it best to head somewhere new and to find a place in which to find my own sandy smiles. So I headed to the Long Distance Bus Station (no buses from the Beima Lu bus station go to Weihai) and grabbed a bus to Weihai city (ticket cost 30 Yuan). The journey took around two hours during which I dozed and listen to my MP3. As we arrived in Weihai city the guy next to me began talking to me and surprise to me his English was awesome. His name was Gavin and he is a sales engineer for a company called Trelleborg (Marine Systems). His card is in Chinese on one side and English on the other and I can’t say I’ve seen that before in the past four and a half years I’ve been in China.

It is but a simple thing but I found it gave me the comfort that I needed right there and then. Gavin was just the person I needed to meet.

We have all gone through times when things have become so confusing that our pathway in life has become overgrown with weeds overnight and it is during these times that life places before us someone who allows the light to shine again and that’s who Gavin was for me this morning. Over the past few weeks in Shandong, due to being a foreigner I have been constantly robbed by the tourist industry and there has been nothing I could do about it. Either you pay or you go without a hotel, food and water. I have wanted to travel around Shandong for some time but what I found was not what I expected mainly due to the angelic write ups most travel sites give this province.

Add to that Luo Wei’s departure and the unknown future we have together. You then have one hell of a sad confused and messed up mind.

So I guess you could say that I can never thank Gavin enough for that one simple little gift he offered me this day. I needed some of the comforts of home. I needed the cleanliness, the solitude, the quite and the respect of all those staying here to keep it that way. I usually stay in the cheapest of the cheap hotels when I travel thus to allow me to continue to travel as accommodation eats up most of a travelers budget but this one night, this very one night I needed to feel like I was with my family and friends and it was given to me by a complete stranger.

So I can guess that you have an understanding of what is happening at this point of time.

For two years she has been a constant smile in the blog you have been reading and apart of, but due to family commitments and the simple life that it requires it is doubtful that that beautiful smile will be apart of my future blogs and life. Right now life is not where I thought it would be and weeds are growing on my pathway where I never anticipated they would be. The future I had created in my mind has been erased and changed in a way I never expected. But life, no matter what it throws our way it continues its own adventure and either we are willing participants or non willing participants, it will no matter what we expect, it will continue with our without us.

I for one am a willing participant. I shall hold my head up high and place one foot before the other and walk into the future. It is in no way not the future I expected it to be but it is a future that is expected of me.

After Luo Wei’s departure I swore to myself that I would leave Shandong after my visit to Weihai and head back down south to where I know I will find respect and comforting smiles but this morning a simple man changed all that with his willingness to help and his genuine friendliness. After we departed the bus and as we were getting along so well we decided to stay in the same hotel, well that was until we arrived at the hotel and I found out it was well out of my budget.

It seems there was an easy answer. He was willing to put half my room cost into his company card. With a smile he very much said, 'There, it is now well within your budget!’

What could I say but a huge thank you and as he is from Qindao we are hoping to meet for a beer or three when I get there maybe next week sometime. Tomorrow I will have to leave the comforts of this beautiful ‘Home Inn’ and find a new hotel to stay in, which of course will not be as clean and will be much further away from the foreshore than this one. After lunch Gavin headed out to go about his afternoon at work and I decided to hit the foreshore which I was told was about a kilometer or less directly east down Shichang Road.

As I didn’t have a map I decided to spend the day walking and getting lost along the way. Then later in the evening do my best to find my way home.

<u>The Weihai Happiness Arch and The Happy Foreshore Park</u>

At the end of Shichang Road I found what is known as the Happiness Arch which is a thirteen storey glass arch way that over looks the bay and Liugong Dao (Dao means Island). The arch costs 18Yuan to take the lift to the top where it offers beautiful views of the bay (east) and the city (west) but sadly not the beach side parks to either side of it. I then spent most of the afternoon walking to the end of the southern foreshore park and then back tracking until I returned to the Happiness Arch after which I walked to the end of the northern foreshore park. The foreshore parks are so beautiful and full of lush green grass and trees under which can be found many couples dedicating their love to each other (through laughter and conversation). The other thing I really loved about the park were the statues and I was so happy to find that they were of both eastern and western inventers, musicians and thinkers.

The end of the western foreshore park is where I found the ferry terminal to Liugong Dao (Island). I decided to wait until tomorrow to visit the island due to cost and time.

The rest of the afternoon and early evening I slowly made my way past the Naval Bases until I reached the end of the bay. Not a walk I’d advise others to do mainly as all the good beaches and views are blocked by the many different Naval Bases. At the end of the bay I did find a small beach where hundreds of fishing boats were docked for the day awaiting nightfall before heading out to sea. While walking I had noticed Bus Number 84 passing by in both directions so to save my feet I decided to grab the bus back into the city where I ended up on Xinwei Lu which is a main shopping street in the city. I spent a few hours crossing between Winwei Lu and Tongyi Lu in the direction of my hotel and how happy was I when I came across a vibrant market street filled to the brim with stalls full of offerings along with bbq stalls.

<u>Dangcheng BBQ & Market Street</u>

I decided to take a seat and ordered a plate of bbq sticks and a jug full of beer from the keg.

Due to Qingdao city being so close (home of China’s largest brewery) all of these small coastal towns are full of kegs. Anywhere there is a free space during the daylight hours, night time finds it filled with tables and chairs where there will be several bbq stalls with many beer kegs stacked beside them. Here both locals and tourists can be found munching and drinking themselves into happiness as the beer is plentiful and both the beer and the bbq is very cheap. There are so many kegs here, in Yantai and Penglai that I have walked past many Simple Beer Sellers. I call them this because they place themselves between the bbq corners and all they have is one keg, a light and a bag of plastic cups and they have crowds of people around them all guzzling down one beer and then moving onto their next destination.

In the west we seriously have too many rules and regulations that come between us and our happiness!

No visit to Weihai would be complete without a beer at the Dangcheng BBQ and Market street and this vibrant street can be found on Dangcheng Street which runs between Heping Road and Shichang Road and it is well worth a visit on a warm summers evening.

Beers N Noodles toya…..shane

___________________________________________________________

The soundtrack to this entry was by Slayer. The album was the awesomely powerful &#8216;South of Heaven’ ____________________________________________________________

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk


Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Weihai Foreshore &#38;amp; City Walk

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China

Email this entryFacebookStumbleUpon

Table of contents

Be the first to comment on this entry.

Comments on this blog entry are now closed to non-Travellerspoint members. You can still leave a comment if you are a member of Travellerspoint.

Login