Found A New Home
Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to ys
I have just returned from May Day Holidays and what a journey it was. I spent many MANY hours on buses and waiting for buses and amongst some of the most beautiful families and villages. But hey, I love buses and I love waiting areas, you meet so many people and it is a large part of travelling. Most hate it but I enjoy it.
It was an amazing experience eating the most beautiful dishes and drinking a billion gallons of beer.
I stayed in luxury hotels and little hut type houses with dirt floors just like the last time I was in China. I spent my time with Mandy and Luke and their generations of family. We were supposed to go on Friday but we had to do 'make up classes' on Saturday so we couldn't head off until late Saturday afternoon.
And 'make up' classes doesn't mean dressing up like Gene Simmons from Kiss!!! Tee hee...
Today, up early and off to another little town in the area. Here we visited a school, walked and ate different foods along the river for hours, just beautiful! It was then a bus trip back to Tiandong to sadly drop Mandy off for teaching tomorrow.
We said our sad goodbyes and I finally reached Tianyang at around 8:00pm.
So, that's my little adventure, a couple of months worth of travel, eating and drinking all packed onto 6 days...life is just beautiful.
Hope all is well and Chinese smiles to you...Shane
Hey Hey and a big G'Day toya
Today after breakfast we boarded another bus and headed to Pingguo.
We had to stop in at Tianyang (home) to grab Mandy's teaching plans as she has to sit an exam for no reason other than the fact that the government want all teachers to sit an exam.
When we arrived at Pingguo we had a big family dinner at her Aunties place.
Mandy grew up with her Aunt's family as her family was too poor to raise her. Their daughter Jenny was home for the Holidays. I had met here before at the Baise Teachers college where a friend teaches and in fact he is her teacher for English. It was hot afternoon and once again, there was sooooooo much food.
We then took a walk around the town and headed to her Uncles place for dinner and more beer. He is high up in the Agricultural Bank of China. His daughter won the English award for her age group in the area BUT that doesn't mean too much when it comes to talking as they never get to talk or use English. So it's mostly reading and text book stuff. She couldn't really understand me and found it hard to communicate.
She didn't have an English name either so I named her Emily or Emma...dunno why, she just looked like an Emma or Emily.
Afterwards we went for a walk to the little square where a heap of people set up speakers each night and dance and Karaoke. They do this in most towns but usually it's the older generation singing their songs from the revolution etc but this one was a mixture of old and young, both dancing to a disco beat.
Was great to watch and listen to.
Thursday, 5th May 2005 - the morning was spent at the Local Market buying food, fruit and vegies for Mandy's family. It was then a bus trip to their village. Tiny and very poor. Another hut/house type thing with dirt floors and wood burner and gaps in the wood and basically nothing but a table, some little chairs and chickens and dogs running in and out. Here for the guest (me) they sacrificed three chickens and for the next 5 hours cooked up the biggest feast. Their house is set amongst rice fields and beside a river, it is just beautiful.
The toilet is set in with the pigs but luckily above them, unlike some of the places I have visited out the back of Tianyang where you actually sit in with the pigs!
During the 5 hours preparation time I thought I'd take a walk. I thought Mandy had gone for noon nap and every one was so busy. I knew if I had tried to tell someone they would all stop what they were doing and come with me to make sure I was alright. So off I went out into the hills for an hour or so and on my way back I could hear people yelling and beeping and yep, they were all out searching for the lost foreigner who wasn't lost but trying to come to terms with days of feasts in his name by people whom can barely afford to live each day.
They were so happy I was ok. Mandy was pretty angry for awhile but understood what would have happened if I had said anything about going for a walk. The rest of the family came and others from around the joining villages. We began eating at 4:00 and were still going at 10:00.
Oh so much beer and food.
We began eating outside and then a storm flew in so we moved everything inside and then moved the little tables back outside to sit and watch the lightening storm that danced around us for another 2 hours. Finally grandma and grandpa were helped walk up and didn't grandpa have a laugh when we met. He sat with his wine and before each sip he'd cheers or 'Gumbey' me and laugh so hard.
I thought he'd keel over from a heart attack the way he was laughing.
Mandy and I then went to Pingguo's square...WOW...it was so big.
Not as big as Tiananmen Square in Beijing but it has the Music Fountains like the little ones we have at the Melbourne Casino and the tiny one in the Gold Coast Mall where the water squirts up in time with the music from little holes in different patterns and shapes. Well, the square was ALL like one big music fountain. I just stood and said WOW for an hour or more. Everywhere you looked there were fountains near and far and all in time with the music. It becomes like the local pool.
It was so hot that I think half the town were there under the fountains.
Friday, 6th May 2005 - Pingguo - just stuff, never you mind!
Saturday, 7th May 2005 - Pingguo - just stuff, never you mind!
Beers N Noodles Toya...shane
Hey Hey and a Big G'Day Toya
Today we headed back into Lor Yah or Loyer and then to Ling Yuin.
WOW, what a beautiful town. Again set amongst the hills but this town was so pretty and clean. We were met by one of Mandy's friends and I was taken to a beautiful little hotel beside the river.
Once again I got it well under half the price I should have.
We then headed to Mandy's friends place for a family dinner and then a walk around the town. I was in heaven. The place is known for its green tea and it has the world's largest tea pot and two tea cups. They are massive. I went from tea shop to tea shop trying different teas.
MMMMmmmm, I'm a lucky boy!
After Terry and Mandy left I sat on my balcony and had a couple of beers and just looked at this huge hill right before my eyes. Heaps of holes and trees here and there. Terry (Mandy and Luke's friend) wanted me to stay a few more days so he could show me around and take me through some more caves. It was tempting but I wanted to go visit Mandy's family and she had already told them I was coming.
Plus I plan on returning quite a few times in the future, I can take off for weekends to Ling Yuan on a Friday night.
Beers N Noodles Toya...shane