A Travellerspoint blog

July 2005

Always Back in Yangshuo (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

HHHhhhhuuummm...um...I...um...Yangshuo....

...what can I say to excuse myself....

I'd like to tell you about the Black Buddha Cave, the Water Cave, Yuulong He, water gardens full of splendour, Green Lotus Peak (another damn Lotus...thing!) and Man and Lady Hills. I'd also like to fill your head full of details of watery romantic adventures along the Li River, markets full of colourful foods and aromas, minority peoples full of smiles as they bargain a price comfortable for both

(they win, you lose! But hey, you get to walk away with a....colourful thing....that you can do...stuff with...why did I buy this again? What I should have purchased was the pair of 'original' Leevy Straus 502's I walked past back there!)....

I'm afraid to say peoples, this time around in Yangshuo I saw my 'not so fluffy pillow' by day and MC Blues Café by night. I met a hell of a lot of good people from all over the world, ate a lot of Western Food from all over Yangshuo (oh my poor stomach had no idea what to do with it!), listened to some damn fine music (thanks to Derik's remarkable collection) and drank copious amounts of good clean cheap Chinese beer.

Hey, it's refreshing after a good days sleep! Man needs a good beer after a good days sleep...you've never heard of that one? Old Chinese proverb from the Tianyang area from around 2005AD.

This time around In Yangshuo I spent my time with people.

I filled my nights, well, early mornings until the 'later' early mornings chatting to the English Students that fill the Cafés in Yangshuo over the summer break. It's like a pilgrimage. Each year they flock from the Nanning/Guilin area universities to work for free in Yangshuo Cafes. Why for free? So they can talk to us, people like you and I whom speak English as their native tongue. They are young, vibrant, full of genuine interest in our world and if their tongues could manage it and/or if you would allow them, they would ask a million questions every minute they are with you.

After sunrise, we would go for a breakfast of Joutsa and answers.

You would shuffle the food in your mouth between the Joutsa and the never ending supply of answers demanded of you. No, it's not that bad, if you didn't want to be there you wouldn't be, you would have politely left hours ago. Me, I love China and being a teacher here I love to give the answers to the 'what's this, what's that, how say this, what this mean' questions. Or as some of my younger students would say 'Arrrr, hello/goodbye' questions. They would be pointing at something of interest but not know what or how to ask so they say the only three words millions of Chinese know...Ok, hello or goodbye.

The pointing action makes it a question that requires a genuine answer.

After breakfast we would make our way to the river, jump in fully clothed and be carried away by the current. When the rocks on the bottom begin to connect with your knees, legs, arms and head you quickly find yourself rather sober and desperately trying to doggie paddle your way to the rivers edge, be it the right one or wrong one.

I do remember making it to Moon Hill and climbing it for my 4th time in a daze after 2 hours sleep.

Hey I've plenty of photos from up there, I can look at them when my memory requests it! My visit to Yangshou was a special time. One not spent racing around the place on a bicycle or going from market to market or magical view spot to magical view spot. It was spent amongst people. Might have been spent sitting in pretty much the same bar each night, but each night the people change, the students change, the food got better and the music even better.

I met Mickey for the first time when I was in Yangshuo five years ago.

When it was a tiny little place for long term travellers to kick their heels off, sit back and watch a DVD whilst eating their first Western Food for many months. It was up the other end of town and I would sit and contemplate life and my diary dates and what I had done on which date. Nothing changes, I still can't keep a decent diary which is why I fill my diaries full of jibber. But people like my jibber, it seems to make them comfortable in some strange way, I like to jibber so we all seem to be happy.

This time I can thank Mickey and Canadian Derik for another wonderful time in Yangshuo. Guess I'll be back again real soon!

Beers N Noodles toya...shane

Nice Reflection

Nice Reflection


Peaceful

Peaceful


Yangshuo2

Yangshuo2

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Ping'an Adventure (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

Ping'An, what can I say or write that other people haven't already written.

The colours, the hills, the people, the, the, the...oh man, you just have to go there and see it to believe it. I've been told by a few people who have been to Sapa in Vietnam that Sapa is nothing in comparison. I can't comment having never been to Sapa...hey, it was getting too cold! I walked for a few days in a daze. I have never been anywhere like it.

For me it was new and very exciting.

It was like a green beach and a heap of layered sandcastles, you know the ones you used to make with a little red or blue plastic buckets and yellow spades. Oh yeah, and the tourist name for Ping'An is, you guessed it, it has dragon in it!

It's Dragons Backbone Rice Terraces or Longji Titian.

We left Guilin Tuesday and spent 4 hours on 2 buses to get here. Had to splash out 50 Yuan for the 'area ticket', or Mr, you no go in! But what's the 50 Yuan for. Mr, you no go without it! HHHHhhhhhmmmm. When we arrived we were met by the usual stalls and people saying You Buy You Buy You Buy, but its all part of the beauty. Keep telling yourself this and it doesn't bother you so much.

Hey, it's not going to go away now is it!

Might as well enjoy it and look at things, oh isn't it beautiful, it's a hanky for my head! Yep, I purchased about 4 of them over the next few days. Good for under the bike helmet back home. Oh, isn't this just stunning, it's a.....a....another thing to buy and never look at. Enough, bye bye.

You begin the walk up to Ping'An by going across a little bridge full of You Buy You Buy stalls and when you round the hill the view that is before you just makes you stop.

Oh WOW, Oh WOW, Oh WOW, or many other words that I shaln't write come to mind. Would you look at that...they are green, they are layered, they are rice fields but made and created by a master sculptor? I have and walk through many rice fields on my daily walks in Tianyang but this is just amazing. You begin the walk up the hill to the village (they better have Pizza! Tee hee!), passing you are local women with full fridges and freezes on their shoulders (shared between two with the typical shoulder sticks); men come past with gas bottles on shoulder sticks.

Everything is carried.

Soon you come to the village and choose where you want to say. We wanted the best view, so hey, why not go right to the top, that way, when ever you go somewhere, you have to walk right to the top to get home...smart idea, but hey they were stunning views and we didn't pay anymore than below. It seems everywhere in China is becoming a mirror image on the thought behind Yangshuo. Here you can use the net, get western food, in fact, I met a few people who ran the cafes that had worked in Yangshuo for a spell. But one thing that comes with the whole Yangshuo idea is good coffee. Didn't need the 3 in one here mate.

I had the real deal!

After we had chosen, eaten and had coffee we headed up to View Point 1 & back around to View Point 2. We had met a Dutch couple who were sweet and we all decided to walk together. Every step of the way plays on the mind. Is it real, if it is, how am I so lucky to be part of it? A 20 minute walk to View Point 1 takes 40 minutes as you can't stop staring. Then there is the walk to View Point 2. Oh mumma don't wake me.

If it's all a dream, lemme sleep!

Wednesday (27th): we headed out with some guides on a 'yeow walk' as they called it. I think what they meant was the Yeow people are the minority people here. Maybe I'm wrong. Up past View Point 1 to find more You Buy You Buy Yeow People. Finally past them and the morning was spent walking amongst hills and hills full of rice terraces.

When we reached the women's homes we all sat for lunch and the girls played dress ups in local attire. After our bellies were full the girls decided to head home and I decided not too waste such an opportunity. I continued on. track after track, valley after valley and hour after hour of mind blowing views of lush green layered rice fields. A lot of people go part of the way and head down to catch the bus back. Bugger that mate, I continued on for a few more hours and then walked all the way back.

You miss too much in a bus which is why I always choose to ride and walk any distance that is walk or rideable.

I'm sure it would not take too long to get used to a place like this. Soon its beauty would become the norm. How could it not, there is so much of it. So by not staying too long in Ping'An the memories and the photos will always remain what they were at first sight...those four letter words you used when you first arrived...you know...WOW with two O's!!!

Beers N Noodles toya..shane ___________________________________________

The soundtrack to this entry was by the beauty of LUSH The album was 'Spooky' ___________________________________________

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure


Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Guangxi Ping An Rice Adventure

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Guilin Adventure (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

I'm now in Guilin which used to be the capital of Guangxi years ago but now it's Nanning.

We found our Palace of fluffy pillows and TV switches right near the train station. Good position to be in..NOT! But I'm not complaining I could be at home in Australia digging holes for the government! I love Guilin and the Guilin area, it was my favourite area last time and it's just gets more beautiful! Hell of a lot more people here now though.

Seems the Chinese also love the area.

OK, what have we been up to?

On Sunday: went to Reed Flute Cave or Ludi Yan. Entry fee is a bit high, around 65 Yuan, but hey, I'm not digging holes, so why not spend some time underground! It was just stunning even with some of the tacky coloured lighting. Sooooo BIG. They reckon a part of it called 'the Crystal Palace of the Dragon King' can hold upto 1000 people. Yep, I reckon it could too! The stalactites and stalagmites were awesome, but my favourite cave is still in Loyer.

This is bigger, grander but if I was to be trapped in a cave, I'd like my last breaths to be in the cave in Loyer. Like all caves in China, it was also used as an air raid shelter during war time.

Betchya they fit more than 1000 people in the Crystal Palace then!

After the cave we went for a walk up the mountain. Stunning views as promised of the area around us. Argh, to be a lucky boy! The Lotus Pond was so almost too inviting...hot, water, swim! But I thought against it, never know what's in there. Why is everything Lotus this and Dragon that in China?

One day I'll find someone who can give me a good answer.

Found a bookshop with some English books, but they were all Penguin Classics I had already read. Tried out the Forest of Flowers restaurant. MMMmmm mmmMMM! A tasty dish served was there by girls dressed in army type uniforms.

Didn't quite understand the connection between the army and flowers though, but the girls were pretty.

Kitty and I spent the evening strolling through the market place that seemed to stretch forever along the roadside. The river side walk was just beautiful. There was a music fountain but when compared to the one in Pingguo this was just an embryo. We sat for hours talking and watching people strolling by on the beautiful marble bridge. I wish we in Australia would have more respect for our cities and make beautiful things like that.

Instead we put up some silly looking thing that looks like it took 2 days to create and 5 minutes to build (I'm talking about the Yarra river walking bridge at South Gate).

We found the Old Gate and a comfortable place to play cards and drink many beers whilst a storm angrily threw as much our way as it could. We survived and continued the walk around the lake after the storm got bored and went to another city to bother other tourists. But like many places in China, you can't actually walk all the way around the lake as a hotel has blocked off one end. Yeah, nice work. HELLO, who wasn't thinking when the town planner approved this one! So you have to go around the imposing hotel to continue the beautiful walk.

By then your thoughts have changed to looking for more beer.

On Monday: we headed to the Seven Star Park or Qixing Gongyuan. Just beautiful. It seems Guilin is bringing out the tourist in me. It does seem some of the more popular places are worth a visit. This park was just beautiful. Zoo was both horrible and not so bad at the same time. Tiny cages, cement floors for some, but others like me, had fluffy pillow type accommodation.

Maybe they know somebody too.

I loved walking along the hill trails and visiting the tombs. Such beautiful views of Guilin and the limestone Karst peaks. Heaps of grass and shade too which was welcomed by the three of us. Ponds here and there with ducks and other watery things. Monkeys roaming around (without chains!). Another cave with not so many tacky lights but worth a look. A beautiful temple that I'm assured is hundreds of years old (like the old city in Leijing?). Is it a new old Temple or an old new Temple? HHHhhhmmm, one has to wonder.

There were shiny golden statues with prayer cushions before them, incense burning everywhere, but strangely I didn't get asked for money like everywhere else that has shiny golden statues and places to rest your knees. Like last time I was here, I'm sure I'll get to the point that as soon as I smell incense I'll be running the other way.

Afterwards we headed to the place Kitty and I had played cards and hid ourselves away from the storm last night.

Kylie had been wanting Pizza and Pizza was assured on the window. A big picture and the word PIZZA welcomed our hungry bellies. Haven't had cheese for quite some time, am lactose intolerant but this is pizza and I couldn't wait until we reached Yangshuo.....you go to China to eat Pizza I hear some of you say. Hey, I've been living on dog, cat, rice noodles, vegies and rice for the main meals and for snax I've been eating chicken's feet, pig's eyes, ducks tongue and throat and other assorted goodies from inside strange animals.

Somewhere I'll get to telling you about eating pigs eyes and ducks tongue...

I always wonder if I taste as good to the duck as it does to me. OK, back to the pizza...yes, pizza, even the picture on the window was worth eating.

We sat, we glanced at the menu, took another longer look at the menu, looked at each other and actually ran our fingers through the menu. No Pizza! No Pizza! WHAT, NO PIZZA! Excuse me, where is the pizza. Soddy Mishta, no pizza. Why do you have the picture on the window? Soddy Mishta, no pizza. They've never ever had pizza there. Like already explained in another dates entry. They are just getting in now, doing their best to westernise at a much too fast rate before they actually get the pizza there to serve.

Hey, get the customers there first is what I say!

At least they had good cheap Chinese beer and a table to play cards on!

Beers N Noodles Toya...shane

At The Old Gate

At The Old Gate


Enter At Own Risk

Enter At Own Risk


Guangxi - Guilin 2x

Guangxi - Guilin 2x


Guangxi - Guilin 4x

Guangxi - Guilin 4x


Just Beautiful

Just Beautiful


Mate, wouldya look at that!

Mate, wouldya look at that!


Qingxiu Shan 3

Qingxiu Shan 3


Qingxiu Shan 5

Qingxiu Shan 5


Qingxiu Shan 7

Qingxiu Shan 7


Up In Smoke

Up In Smoke

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Beihai Adventure (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya

What can I say but 'I love you fluffy pillow' but now it has to be good bye, I'm off to Beihai. I'd give up any 5 Star Hotel Fluffy Pillow for a swim at the beach.

After living on Australia's Gold Coast and being away from the surf and sand for so long, it was time to 'go home'. After thanking Max the wonder man (he is a gem as is his wife Judy) we boarded another safe looking bus and ipod'd it for 4 hours to Beihai. As the bus drew near I began to see things from my stored memory...is that...yes, its sand. When I peeled my face off the window I left the bus with Kitty and Kylie and we took a cab (spared no expense this holiday mate!) to our next..wait for it...Multiple Star Hotel!

Wahoo, and she was a beauty.

The name...something about roads, something weird, but wonderful. She was big and tall and full of fluffy pillows. There were big chairs, a window ledge you could sit on, even a kettle with assorted teas sitting beside it. Yes, something I would get used to over a short period of time...I never had the tea; I just liked looking at them and having them near by. I had my 3 in one satchel coffee. Mate, when you need the rush, you'll drink it too. I've been drinking it for 8 months now and sad to say...I love it!

Who needs beans, who needs grains or granuals when you have 3 in one....'stuff'.

OK, booking in was fun. VISA and Master Card signs everywhere, just like everywhere else in China. But you can't use them. Sorry, we don't take that card....HELLO you say pointing to the sign. HELLO, you've just been speaking English but now you can't read English. No you don't say that, you just node and accept what you can't change.

Time is the only thing that can change a place like China.

They are maybe developing a little too fast. You see, everyone has VISA and MasterCard signs, but no machines, that's the first sign of a country developing too fast! It's like getting the Pizza boxes stored in the,,,no actually, it's like when I was in Guilin and the window had a picture of a pizza and the word pizza, but when you ordered pizza, they don't have pizza, infact, never have had pizza. But strangely, this is part of the reason I am so attracted to China. It's all innocent, they are trying so hard but most of the time, just get lost in the confusion.

OK, yudda yudda, fluffy pillows yudda yudda, a room with a view OF EVERYTHING to the coast and the bright blue sky above, that infact, had birds in it. Yes birds.

The only time I have heard birds this year is when friends and family ring from home. I can hear Magpies and other fluttery feathered friends that are not too scared to fly and make a noise. No birds in the Chinese skies. They hide somewhere maybe in caves or another country where if they move, they won't get eaten. Yes, I'm sad to say, some are quite delicious.

Birds don't come near me anymore, I've joined the 1.3 billion to fear!

...um....yes yes, getting on with the day...went out into the beautiful tree lined streets of Beihai, caught the number 3 bus the 10kms to Silver Beach. Yes and if your ever in the area go to Silver Beach area, on the way, don't look out the windows because you see some really dumb looking hotels and things I just don't know what to call...castles maybe and...other assorted things!

I'm the type of traveller that never updates books, so I usually have a guide book (that's if I do have one) that is many years old.

Why pay 50 bucks when you can pay 4 in a second hand book shop! Why, because China is changing so fast, I guess even the latest LP will be out of date in a few months time. Finally the bus passed the eye sores and stopped. The three of us headed to what we thought was the 'free' beach. Infact, both are free now! It was beautiful. Just like Queensland waters, the water is too warm to refresh you, but it's fantastic in all its glory! We soon moved on to 'the Silver Beach'. We had to know why it cost 25yuan to get into. That's like 4 bottles of good cheap Chinese beer! We found the gate and no one was there. Do we make a run for it now or just hang back a little to see what's going on. We hung back; no one came so through we went.

Yes, we did find out it was free.

We found a spot amongst the millions of Chinese who for some reason all gather at this beach. Why not use both beaches. There is a perfectly good beach right next door, why are you all here and only 20 people there. I asked the same question to myself and could only come up with one answer...this is Silver Beach and whilst I'm here, I'm gonna swim in it!

So I joined the millions who were fighting for space.

It's funny how the Chinese swim at the beach. They don't actually swim. They wait for a wave, turn around, jump and all at the same time..imagine this...a thousand people all jumping and saying 'wooooo!' over and over again. You have to see and hear it to believe it. It's actually like being at the MCG in Melbourne while the footys on and if someone gets knocked down everyone says 'woooooo' but in a deeper tone ofcourse.

Swimwear is also strange in China, especially the female swimwear.

During summer here, girls will wear tiny denim shorts and high heels. Hey, I'm not complaining, it's a damn fine look! But what I can't seem to understand is, they actually wear more in the water whilst swimming than what they wear out on the streets around town. Picture an ice skating uniform, well that's Chinese swimwear but longer than the ice skating uniforms you see on the TV.

It's all too strange sometimes!

Soon the sun went down and a million more Chinese arrived...yes you read right, most Chinese people swim at night...why, because there is no sun. Stop trying to think rationally because it won't work. Just accept it and say ok, they swim at night. I don't, but they do. Everyone, EVERYONE here has an umbrella. They fear the sun and they fear the rain and they live in a kinda fear that either will happen, so most of the time, they live beneath their umbrella.

I think moreso in country areas than city but it's strangely another true fact of China.

Too many people, we left the beach and the 'wooooing' and headed across the road to sit, relax and eat another awesome cheap meal. Oh yes, water spinach, egg plant, some beef dish, rice and good cheap Chinese beer. There was other stuff but I'm not good with food names, especially when I can't read what they are...something like this maybe ##+|/#. Oh, that means Dog Hotpot..sorry! Don't cringe, Spots a tasty dish! So's fluffy the cat.

That's an entirely new story, if I remember I'll write it in this Travelogue.

I think it was around 19th or 20th March. After reading this, go back to that date. Ok Ok, don't get pushy. Well, basically, we went to visit a friend, she came home, was calling for something, going from room to room calling #|/#!!! I asked my friend what she was calling for...she was calling for her cat...where's the cat. HHHhhhhmmm, it had been boiling away in the cooker right in front of me for the past hour or more. Her parents heard I was coming to dinner and wanted to do something special so....Felix ended up in hot water.

I love cats, have two of my own, if anyone tried to hurt them I'm take their arm off, but when someone does this 'for you'.

You can not get all RSPCAish, especially in China. Hey, the cat made the mistake of moving, it got caught. Stop thinking rationally! If it moves, it gets eaten here, sometimes if it doesn't move, it'll get pushed I'm sure! The saying, when in Rome do as Romans do is just the half of saying, When in China, do as the Chinese do.

Now I don't have to write about the cat story!

Yudda yudda, bus home, yudda yudda, sat on fluffy pillows drinking beer...yudda yudda, spilt beer on fluffy pillow, devastation set in, Shane was found on the balcony ledge...just joking, no balcony and I had another fluffy pillow!

The following day, Tuesday (19th) was pretty much the same but we spent all day on the beach. You can hire a table with a big umbrella, on the beach. Yep, rows of them. When the tide comes in, they come over and move it for you. But sadly, no one brings you beer. You have to walk and get it yourself. Bugger! But this day I swam for too long and ended up rather pink. Argh, woddoya do!

It felt good to be burnt again.

Wednesday (20th) we headed to Under Water World with Kitty's Middle School Buddy. Pretty much the same as the one on the Coast back home. Won't go into it...fish and rays in big tanks, can swim with the sharks 'if you want'. They didn't move the entire time we were there, so they are either dead or very very well fed! Headed across to the Pearl Shop Thing..big shed, lotsa expensive pearls. Boring story.

Beer, oh yes, went for a walk, love walking in China!

Found a good little local restaurant, sat and found a Dutch couple across from us...Andus and Tanya. They joined us, we all shared beers and had some more awesome food. I want to marry a Chinese cook, but not one that has left China and gone all 'lets mix this and that and call it Chineseish'. Oh, the food. You don't have to know what it is, just point at something that looks good.

If you're in a small town or on a mountain, go into the kitchen and point.

Usually, if you point to something, they know the other something or somethings that go with it and you'll find you'll both be pointing and having a great time! Good, ice broken between you and everyone's happy. OK, home for rest, counting fluffy pillows to get to sleep now! Headed back to the beach for the afternoon, you know, bus number 3 at Yingbinguan, stupid castles, a million 'wooooing' people.

More food and beer, end of story.

Thursday (21st) rain, spent longer with fluffy pillows in the morning. Went out for a walk..yea, good idea mate! Spent like an hour in the bank until it began to flood, caught taxi (spared no expense!) to shopping mall thing with many shops to shop in. The girls hadda great time and so did I! China's great for shopping; every shop sells the same stuff. Sometimes a different colour or model but it's usually the same. It's changed over the last 5 years, now you have 10 mobile phone stores or counters to one or two other 'things' stores or counters.

Shopping's not always a good idea.

Beers N Noodles Toya..shane

Beihai Beach 1

Beihai Beach 1


Beihai Beach 2

Beihai Beach 2


Beihai Beach 3

Beihai Beach 3


Beihai Beach 4

Beihai Beach 4


Beihai City 1

Beihai City 1


Beihai City 2

Beihai City 2


Beihai City 3

Beihai City 3


Beihai City 4

Beihai City 4


Beihai Underwater World

Beihai Underwater World


City Walk

City Walk


Fishing

Fishing


Noon Nap Time

Noon Nap Time


Oh The Beach

Oh The Beach


Water Village

Water Village

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Nanning Adventure (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

Up much much too early and shambled around until we arrived at the bus station.

Argh, to travel in style. A Korean super bus! Ya gotta luvem and the changes in Chinas transport! For the next four or so hours we dodged oncoming traffic with a few hairy moments but we made it in one piece.

I should be used to this by now but something tells me I may never get 'that' used to it.

Kylie and I were met by Kitty's brother whom we later named Max and taken back to their place for some refreshments. Their little one, Golden Dragon is his name, could keep anyone amused for hours. Max had organised our accommodation and we were soon taken to our hotel...um....well, I'd like to tell you stories of smells and hairs found in the bed amongst bugs and blood spots but, that's my past..cough cough, we have people whom know people.

Yes, no hostels or cheap hotels for us on the first few legs of our journey.

We are entering a new world of comfort zones called 3 to 5 Star Hotels. Oh to be in the know, and the cost???? I won't even bother to inform you of the rates we got, you would cringe at the mere comparison to what you pay for a guesthouse or hostel room...plus the added bugs and hairs!

I'll admit it, I've never actually travelled this way before, except when the Australian Government sent me on another Client Liaison Course to somewhere like Coogee Beach in Sydney Australia. Well, hey, if ya gotta go, ya gotta go! Anyhow, back to 'thy splendour of it all'. Dunno what the place was called, but it had Seafood in it, or was that the one when we returned to Nanning? Oh to be part of the 'Comfort Zone' travel class. You don't even have to know the name of your hotel and find it from a guide book or do the hotel hop until you find one in your price range.

Eg: Your standing on the street corner looking in both directions cause you actually have no idea which way to hold the book, mainly because you can't read the damn signs. Yes, Yes, for now, that is in my past (it's actually more fun than the Comfort Zone travel class which gets rather boring and very quickly).

OK, Nanning is just beautiful.

It has changed a lot since I was here 5 years ago. I guess it was beginning it's change then. Now it's streets are full of trees and parks and happy relaxed people. It's a different way of doing things in China and I do hope this trend spreads. There just are not enough places to sit and relax in Chinese cities without having to pay to get in or buy something first.

In Nanning, head for the main lake in the middle of town.

It's just awesome to walk around. No you don't see magical mountains in the background, but its part of the new way of thinking in China. There is a walking, riding, or running track, stalls and grass, soooo so much grass to sit on. It's just like being...well, anywhere but in a Chinese city.

Maybe that's just a little too cruel!

Anyhow, after dining with Kitty's family we walked and walked and talked our way around the lake until it was time to..oh despair....to go back to the hotel! Crisp white sheets, fluffy pillows, a little table with gadgets on it. You can even turn the TV off without using the remote control! My my, is it real, is the remote control finally a thing of the past! Do we now not have to look under pillows in search for what can never be found.

Anyhow, no Yiling Cave, no Daming Shan or not even Yangmei was visited this time around. No time and too much comfort! This time I could have a bath....yes, my first bath for 7 months! No, not my first wash! I do have a shower..thing, where I get to wash with last nights dinner scraps as the kitchen sink goes directly onto my bathroom floor..theres nothing wrong with showering amongst Water Spinach or Tofu, it's the damn bones you have to worry about!

Good Night peasants.....Beers N Noodles Toya...shane

Off We Go!

Off We Go!

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)