A Travellerspoint blog

July 2007

Hua Tuo Temple N I Look Like Pierce Brosnan

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya, Finally a day with little to write about! But I'm sure I will find something to ramble on about once I begin! As it was a 'rest day' for my feet I spent most of the morning reading and chatting to Luo Wei (Amigo) in the comfort of my air conditioned room. Hunger soon set in and I was forced to leave the comforts of a cool room and head out into the heat wave that engulfs me as soon as I open my hotel room door. The rooms may have air con but the rest of the hotel doesn't. I decided to find something to eat on the way to KFC for a caffeine fix. I soon come across the husband and wife team from yesterday. He had the noodle trolley and she had the rice trolley. Today it was to be a 'Her Trolley' Day as I had already tried his wokkup. He wokked up a dish that was very much like spaghetti with a tomato sauce and believe me, it really did taste like it too. She wokked up a frenzy and I soon had delicious rice and mixed vegetable dish before me. What a wonderful team effort! I then spent an hour or so in KFC's trying to figure out where to go next. Should I head down to Huang Shan or should I continue further to the east or should I head on down to Jiangxi Province? I had not woken with a single thought on the subject so I thought reading the Good Book may lend a hand. Why can't I be normal and actually plan out an adventure in advance? Buying a bus or train ticket a day or two before leaving a city really is a wonderful idea. But no I have to wake up and then change my mind destination at the last minute, usually at the bus station ha ha! Stoopid Boy! Anyhow, I have decided one thing. I will go to Hefei tomorrow and then I'll decide north, south, east or west. Ha Ha! Anyhow, so much for my rest day. My feet needed a walk so together we headed to a beautiful little temple known as 'The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo'. Hua Tuo was a famous Doctor and Pharmacologist (is that really a word or is it Chinglish?) during the East Han Dynasty (AD25 to 220). He was born here in Bozhou and carefully studied traditional Chinese medicine and Confuciousism. He became 'very' skilled in surgery and also began his own natural herb garden and from there everything blossomed...ha ha ha! I guess this led to Bozhou being one of China's most important traditional medicine centres. To find the temple go to KFC and begin walking back along Xinhua Lu. Take the second little road on your left. It's a quiet street and it won't be long before you'll find a Net Bar on your right. The temple is not far from the Net Bar. If you judge it from the front you will mistakenly believe it is a small place with small grounds. Wrong! After paying your 10 Yuan entrance fee and have finished walking around the main buildings take one of the little paths on either side of the main building. You will soon find a large pond/small lake with a beautiful pagoda in the middle of it. The day's heat was probably the hottest since I have left Fujian Province. Looking at my map I'm not that that much further from the coast as what I am in Shaowu City. After leaving the temple I decided to try and find a smaller temple that Charles the Great had told me about. I had its where-abouts marked on my map (a dot marked by pen) in the little alleyways behind the bus stations on Weiwu Dadoa. Silly idea really, in such heat with such sore feet. I walked here and there and almost everywhere before heading back to the little Net Bar not far from the first temple. Here I spent several hours catching up on emails in between power failures. During these times everyone would move outside where at least there was a little breeze and slam down a bottle or two of cold water. I then headed home for a shower and to read for an hour or so before heading back up to my favourite eatery on Renmin lu. Here I shared a few beers and bowls of noodles with the staff and their children before heading to the local Net Bar (found on Renmin Lu. Turn right from Xinhua Lu and soon you'll see a fridge with a Coke Sticker on it just in the doorway. When I returned to my hotel the 'Floor Girl' greeted me with a happy smile and went to open the wrong door. I questioned as to why and pointed to my door down the hall way. She then began to laugh and mentioned that there was now another foreigner staying in Bozhou in my hotel on my floor. She then confirmed that all foreigners look the same. In the west we say that all Chinese or Japanese etc look the same. It's really not until you've lived in a country for a while that all the differences become reality. To me now they all look different. Of course they mostly have straight black hair, some long some short. But the facial features are no longer the same. Here it seems that no matter what our hair colour is or how big or small our nose is etc, to most we all look the same. This has also been told to me by many Chinese I meet travelling. How cool for me, to Chinese girls I actually must look like Pierce Brosan! How strangely funny! Beers N Noodles toya.....shane ___________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was Seb Fontaine The album was 'Prototype 4' Disk 1

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo


Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (1)

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (1)


Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (2)

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (2)


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Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (3)


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Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (4)


Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (5)

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (5)


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Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (6)


Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (7)

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (7)


Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (8)

Bozhou - The Memorial Hall of Hua Tuo (8)

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

Mate, What an Ancient Facade!

HeyHey and a Big G'Day toya, Here I sit after another huge day of walking Bozhou's streets visiting beautiful places, eating delicious noodles and chatting to happy people. I have decided I have walked Bozhou almost dry and that maybe it is time to move on. But I also think it is time for a rest day. My feet are sore and blistered from all my walking and I have a cheap hotel with aircon and a cheap Net Bar around the corner so maybe I should simply just sit tomorrow and make the beginning of the new month a rest day! I will decide upon waking! Today was an awesome day mainly spent across the river visiting un-walked territory. The morning was frustrating as I went from mobile to mobile store trying to put money on my mobile phone. But China being China and being caught somewhere between cyber space worlds continues to make it impossible to do such a simple thing. Anything such as trying to PUT money into your bank account or PUT money onto your mobile phone remains impossible to do out of YOUR province. EG: My bank account is a Fujian account but I can't go to Guangxi and put money into it. My mobile SIM Card is a Fujian SIM card so I can't go to Guangxi and put money onto my mobile. It is impossible and so frustrating! On computer they an access your accounts on both but they can't take your money. I can withdraw, use my ATM Card and use my mobile anywhere in China, but I can add to either unless I'm in my own province. Seriously, China now has the largest mobile network in the world but the way it works really doesn't make sense to most Foreigners. How can the largest mobile network in the world work in such a stupid and frustrating way. It really makes no sense at all! When I began working here two and a half years ago I thought it would have to change in the very near future, yet it still remains the same.....linked, yet not linked! How do you work it then? You make sure you put a heap of money on your mobile prior to travelling, yet if something goes wrong like what has happened these holidays such as a friend's father dying and then receiving a few calls from Australia then your money disappears quickly. Why? Because when you are out of your province then both the caller and the receiver pay. Of course the caller pays most but the receiver also pays a little and when you receive from over seas, then the receiver pays more again. Go Figure! Anyhow, I got it sorted by texting a good friend from my school whose father put some money on for me and I will pay him upon my return. Once again it shows that China, though it has almost everything 'we' have, it continues to work in a completely different way...it works in a Chinese way and I'm sure most people would probably look at me like I'm an idiot and question as to why in the world I would want to put money INTO my bank account or ONTO my phone when I'm away from my province. No body does that, are you insane! What a stupid thing to do! NOT! Anyhow, to what happened after I got my mobile stuff sorted. I gave Amigo (Luo Wei) a call to see how her day was getting along. She was with her two little sisters at a paint and play shop. So what are 'Sisters'? I think it was introduced when the one child policy was introduced. As each family can only have one child (there are exceptions ie: farmers and minority people) I think the 'brother and sister' thing may have come in to play then. Each person seems to have several very close friends that become like family. They are then called Brothers or Sisters. I spend most of the time asking if they are 'real' as sometimes they are depending on where that person lives etc. We have decided to head to head to Hua Shan in Shaanxi Province together for our week together in October for Chinas 'National Day'. Kind of like Australia but here we get a seven day holiday where in Australia we only get one day and I'm sure the government will one day take that away and leave our Public Holiday that celebrates a three minute horse race! It's all about money! After having to say good bye due to too many car horns and people yelling around me I headed across town to the old quarter near Huaxilou Lu (near the river) and found my way to the Bozhuo Museum and mate, was I not prepared for the building. What an ancient beauty. It oozed stone carvings and colour. The intricate carvings and stone work made it hard to enter the building. Surely what lay behind these walls couldn't live up to the building itself. I would put it right to the top of the list of 'The Most Beautiful Things I've Ever Seen!' It really was stunning!

The entry fee was 20 Yuan and the ticket office is found down a little alley way just off Huaxilou Lu. From Hepin Lou take the second street on the right and then the first street on your left. There is also a little Taoist Temple hidden behind the ticket office which isn't maintained at all. It is peaceful and beautiful all the same. So peaceful that an elderly lady lay snoring the day away on the temple floor. As they are renovating the square out front of the Museum I am sure soon the ticket office will be moved there. Ok, once I tore my eyes from the Museums outer walls I finally entered its small grounds. On the left I found a small building that housed a beautiful butterfly collection. Why wouldn't you have a butterfly collection in a museum! Here I taught a little girl to say Butterfly and Flutter by Butterfly. In the main building I found the usual assorted goodies such as ancient pottery etc. The museums main show piece was a Han Dynasty burial suit made from small individual pieces of jade which were all sown together with silver thread. Awesome to see! In the third building I found a beautiful collection of paintings and just as I was about to leave the grounds I thankfully looked up and what I saw made me stop in mid step. The wooden carvings were splendid. They were so full of detail and colour but sadly I wasn't allowed to enter the second floor and had to make do with the zoom on my little camera. A big shame but not much I could do about it. Maybe second floor wasn't safe to enter but I think as it was like a zillion degrees the staff couldn't be bothered moving to unlock the door for me. I can't blame them as I'm sure I was the only idiot racing from place to place. After leaving the museum I headed across the river and decided to spend the day exploring the northern part of the city. After crossing the river I turned right and crossed another smaller river and began to zig zag my way back down towards the main river. In a little street I stopped to snack on some strange looking bread. We have the same tasting bread all over China but I've never seen it in this shape before. It's thin and crusty and usually round and not long. What ever shape it takes it kind of tastes like it has vegemite, promite or marmite in it. As I began walking a group of girls ran over and began dragging me across the street. Sadly for me...ha ha...they were dragging me into a church that I had not noticed until I looked up and spotted the cross. From the street there was only a bare wall noticeable. Behind this wall there was actually a beautiful old church. Within minutes families came from nowhere and the girls proudly showed off their community church. We all then sat for a short English lesson/practice. It really was such an unexpected wonderful time. As far as I understood they had never had a foreigner in their church before and the priest/minister proudly turned on the lights that lit up the cross for me to take several photos.

After saying a sad good bye I headed back up to Guquan Lu and spent an hour or so walking around the old quarter and amongst its people. I then made my way across Weiwu Dadao where I found a large statue of a Peoples Liberation Army Officer acting as a round-a-bout. Why was he there? I have no idea. I then slowly began to make my way back towards the river . Just before crossing the river I found a public park and decided to have a walk around in the shade for awhile. At the rear of the park I found a Tomb for a Tang Dynasty Imperial Emperor. This part of the city is known as Fengton Village. Here you will find tomb of the Shang Emperors clothes and hats etc. It's true, his clothes and hats have their own tomb! According to legend Chengtang was the chief of the Shang Tribe but later he abolished the Xia Dynasty (2200 - 1700 BC). This tomb was built in the year Jiaging, 23rd year of the Ming Dynasty (AD1368 - 1644) and has been destroyed and rebuilt several times since. For those of you who, like me, find all this dynasty stuff a little confusing, the Xia Dynasty is kind of like the first dynasty on record (2200 to 1700 BC). I'm sure there were others prior but I think this is where is officially begins.

Man I spent half my life in an office when I could have been visiting ancient tombs full of clothes! What in the world was I thinking? Seriously! Blistered feet....Office..... Blistered feet....clothes tombs.....office Blistered feet....noodles.....clothes tombs.....office Blistered feet....Chinese Girls..... I'm choosing anything but the office! From the 'ancient clothes' tomb I headed back across the river and wound my way through the old river community. This runs between Heping Lu and the river. I soon found myself on the corner of Heping Lu and Xinhua Lu near KFC and I then headed home for a well earned cold shower. I read and slept for a few hours and then went in search of Bozhou's best noodles and actually found them. IF you ever visit Bozhou walk to the end of Xinhua Lu (at the Renming Lu end), turn left into Renming Lu, cross to the other side and you will soon pass a small road and several China Telecom and other mobile stores. You will soon come across a small eatery that has a wall sized poster of many noodle and rice dishes. This is the one. Two doors up from an eatery with a sign above its door reading CHNT or something. It seems there are many Muslim Noodle eateries here. This was my third one and easily the best. None of the staff can speak English but mate, they have a huge poster with all their dishes on it along with the price of each dish. Seriously, if you are in China and you want a safe cheap tasty meal, hunt down the white cap. The place will always be run by a family and some friends and the meat will always be top grade and every dish will be one of the best dishes you've ever tasted. In the south people hunt them out. In my current city there is only one eatery which I have named 'The Great Northern After Bar Noodles' eatery. In places like Yangshuo, Dali and Leijing the white capped bbq people are usually kept very busy! When looking at today's photos, you will notice many of what look like dirty little old eateries. Well....they look that way as they are old and full of built up grease and oil but I don't call them dirty. These are the places I actually hunt down for my lunches. I know most of my family and friends would never sit with me and eat at them but these grubby little places seriously dish out the tastiest meals you will ever eat. They are all family owned and run and they are very careful to serve a good safe meal. If they didn't no-one would come and they would be closed down. There is no social secruity here, once they are closed they are pretty much buggered. They have to be take care of their customers and keep them safe! Beers N Noodles toya.....shane __________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was 'Collective Soul' The album was 'Dosage' Awesome Band!

Bozhou - Beautiful Church

Bozhou - Beautiful Church


Bozhou - Beautiful Church (1)

Bozhou - Beautiful Church (1)


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Bozhou - Beautiful Church (2)


Bozhou - City Museum

Bozhou - City Museum


Bozhou - City Museum (1)

Bozhou - City Museum (1)


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Bozhou - City Museum (2)


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Bozhou - City Museum (3)


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Bozhou - City Museum (6)


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Bozhou - City Museum (7)


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Bozhou - City Museum (8)


Bozhou - City Walk

Bozhou - City Walk


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Bozhou - Tang Dynasty EmporerTomb

Bozhou - Tang Dynasty EmporerTomb


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Bozhou - Tang Dynasty EmporerTomb (1)


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Bozhou - Tang Dynasty EmporerTomb (2)

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

Wei Wudi Minority Peoples N a Tomb Labyrinth

HeyHey and a Big G'Day toya, After chatting to Amigo I headed downstairs with my newly 'Pinyinned' map and began to ask the Hotel Lady what was good and what wasn't worth seeing when it came to the little pictures on my map. I had no idea what most of them were, could have been other hotels or toilets as far as I knew and I guessed that some of them were by her hearty chuckles. I decided to begin my days adventure at the old archway/gate way and was soon walking back along the little nameless streets I began on the night before. The LP said there was some sort of war tunnel somewhere along Renmin Lu. Where it was I had no idea. I found a huge statue of some guy and just as I crossed the road I met a guy named Charles. His English was awesome as he was a Chinese English teacher at Bozhou University. We sat chatting for about an hour and we soon found that the 'Caocao Yunbingdao Tunnel' had been closed for a week due to water damage from the huge rains the week before. I asked him what the tunnel was once used for. He pointed to the big statue guy and told me that the statue guy was a brilliant war man and had built many tunnels beneath the city to hide the cities soldiers in so when the enemy came they would have no idea how many soldiers they city actually had. Well, that's the part I remember any how. There was probably more but after a long day that will do! After saying good bye I headed back up to Weiwu Dadoa and began my walk out to a large green patch on my map that had an arch way drawn in it. This was obviously a place to be visited I thought. A green patch with an arch way, how could one go past such an invitation! ha ha! The walk took me about half an hour. I could have caught bus numbers one, two or three there but why would I do such a thing on such a beautiful day. I found the large entrance to the park and looked for the ticket booth. All windows shut so I entered expecting someone to come running after me with an umbrella in the air. Nothing but silence. Cool free entry! What I found next was that the park is actually a park to celebrate the minority peoples of Bozhou known as the Wei Wudi People. The entrance to the park is actually free but the entrance to the little Wei Wudi Peoples Temple is actually 10 Yuan. I wanted to have a look so I paid. Not exciting at all. There was no English but the displays were fun. Basically statues that had one moving hand or body part. It was obviously done out of love so I was glad I paid the entrance fee to help them continue running the park. I then headed into the large green area on my map. The park was huge and full of tees and shady spots to sit. There weren't too many people there and I was pretty much left alone. There were a few small children's amusement parks along with several burial mounds. Who ever thought of putting them in the same place must have been in a strange mood. I think there were about four or five large tombs. Basically a large hill covered in grass and trees surrounded by a small fence. After leaving the park I headed back down Weiwu Dadoa in search of two more Tomb Sites that the lady said were 'good'. I found the first on the corner of Weiwu Dadoa and Wendi Lu. It was a beautiful tomb known as Zhou Zhang Yuan Han Mu. It was the same mound of dirt with grass growing on it, but what was different here was the fact that after paying 5 Yuan you could actually go beneath the tomb. As I had never been beneath a tomb before I was soon descending into a labyrinth of small corridors and arch ways below. I was walking in freezing cold water nearing knee deep in some places. It kind of gave me the Indiana Jones feeling! Ha Ha but luckily there was no music, arrows, bullets, grails, whips...but there was a beautiful girl with a torch with me, maybe she had a whip hidden somewhere down there! I said a huge thank you to the small staff and continued back down Weiwu Dadoa towards the city. I passed the second tomb which was closed and really, one tomb was enough for the day. Whilst walking I spied a tall pagoda to my left hidden down the back streets. Never to pass an opportunity to see a pagoda I soon found it. It really is more of a place to burn incense and though tall its diameter is small. You can walk inside if you like but the ceiling is covered and it is only wide enough for one person. So why would you bother going inside unless you were going to burn some incense? Huh! That's the exact question that was on the faces of the locals when I motioned going inside. Stupid bloody foreigners! After stepping out of the large incense burner and saying good bye to the bemused locals playing mahjong and cards I continued down the little side street and was soon back on the main road. After spotting a market place I headed in for some shade and found it also very cool as it was beneath the ground. It was called 'Xin Tai Walk The Street' and it allowed me to zig zag my way through to Renmin Lu. I then spied another green patch on my map and headed in that general direction. Soon I found a small park filled with families all playing cards, chess and mahjong with what seemed like a million little children running riot around them. After a million strange looks and 'Hellooows' I headed back to the Old Gateway on Heping Lu. If you enter the gateway from Heping Lu and turn right not far from Xinhua Lu you will find a beautiful little Taoist Temple that costs only 5 Yuan to enter. Here I sat to rest and contemplate life as it stood for me now. Similarities between past and present began to emerge. I had just met a beautiful girl who was raised in a Temple. She seems to be wise beyond her years and has a special 'air' about her that one only finds in limited people through out life. Strangely my last girlfriend grew up the same way but with Nuns and not Monks and has that same 'air' about her along with being a very wise soul. What does it mean? Am I a very stupid person who needs to be sent to such people to help me get through life? Or am I too a wise soul in search of someone on the same 'level' as me. I'm going the first choice...ha ha ha! Anyhow after a smiley good bye to the two old gate people I headed down to Xinxing Lu and then bagan my journey in the old Muslim Quarter of Bozhou. Soon I was surrounded by several guys in their mid teens and twenties who took me into their Mosque. They proudly gave me the tour through out and showed me where it was ok to take photos etc. They were so proud of their Mosque. It really was a beautiful experience and soon their parents had joined us and we spent an hour trying our best to ask and answer questions with only limited skills. The guys happily walked with me back to Xinxing Lu and I sat for noodles and a beer at the happy Noodle Eatery from last night before heading home to do some hand washing and chatting to Amigo. In Kaifeng it was raining just as it had the night I nearly had to swim home. Beers N Noodles toya.....shane _________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was The Cult The album was 'Pure Cult' Rock On!

City Gate & Tomb & Walk

City Gate & Tomb & Walk


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City Gate & Tomb & Walk (9)

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

The Hands of Time Took Her From Me N Me to Bozhou

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya,

Bozhou! Here I sit in Bozhou. I am now in the very north western corner of Anhui Province in what was once and in a way still is one of China's most important trading centres for traditional medicine. I've had a huge Huge HUGE late afternoon and night walking around the city with my Chinese map translating the roads into Pin Yin to make tomorrow easier for myself. This really is a lively city and one that comes alive after dark. Little night markets pop up all over the place spreading the smell of BBQ'd meat and other assorted treats. Needless to say my stomach is full of the above. Ok, to the day. Happy Amigo dropped by early this morning for a surprise and very sad good bye. I haven't experienced anything that sad for along time. I can't remember the last time I met someone who actually made me want to simply....STAY! If she didn't have family things to do with her Grandmother and relatives along with a hell of other things to do prior to heading back to Xian, I would have been happy to spend the rest of my holidays in Kaifeng. Not to be so, so we sadly agreed it would be best for me to continue my journeys east. So soon once again the taxi tore our fingers from each others and we both soon became a blur amongst the many in Kaifeng. Happily we both received a text message within seconds of parting. Text can make light of sadness sometimes. Though we have been parted we can continue t pass our thoughts and feelings at will. I love living in some parts of the techno world I live in! Once at the bus station I begged and begged in silence that there wouldn't be a ticket for me on the soon to depart bus.

Sadly there was! Bugger! The journey to Bozhou was around five and a tad hours filled with MP3, reading my novel and firing text messages to and fro between my bus and Kaifeng. Soon the air conditioning broke down and bucket loads of sweat were soon added to the above list. When I arrived I was so hot and tired and not in the best of moods. I really couldn't' be bothered walking the streets in search of a heap hotel so I grabbed a pedicab and asked him to take me to a hotel that was in My Price Range. Of course in about five minutes a world's larges hotel loomed before me. BUGGER! I thought, why not try this huge expensive hotel. I'm sure they will have a beautiful expensive room just waiting for me at my dismal price. Strangely when I asked and told them the price I wanted the girl said yes. I was stunned for a short time and asked to see the room. Impossible this could be true! She chirped on about something else and luckily for me I can tell the time in Chinese and she mentioned six o'clock. HHHmmm, it was now four o'clock. So I asked if I had to sleep and be out by six the next morning...just to test the waters. No she said, six this evening. HUH! You're joking me I thought. I then asked if the room came with two girls and a massage. She laughed and told me I can bring the girls. I laughed and asked if she could take a two hour break. We both laughed. I said good bye. So in the end I had to do the Cheap Hotel Boogie and continually got harassed for more money than a family of Chinese would have to pay for a month. Finally I sat down with my near frozen water and lit up a cigarette and decided to just do as I normally do when I arrive in a city. Things always take care of themselves and will always work out. Why I was so wound up was beyond me. But then I was covered from head to toe in sweat, there was no shade, the concrete was burning the heck out of my butt, I had no air con on a bus that had no windows to open, I had left the sweetest girl behind and had had people continually try to rip me off for nearing two hours. Soon I was giggling at myself for allowing myself to get into a bad mood over something that I usually enjoy...The Cheap Hotel Boogie. Usually good for a laugh, but not today! Soon a man came over and sat with me. His English was minor but we got along with my minor Chinese and his minor English. He soon asked why I was sitting there looking so hot and why didn't' I go home for a shower. I told him no one would give me a home within my price range because they all thought I was a rich American tourist. I told him my story and he pointed directly across the road and said they have nice clean rooms with air-conditioning for under my price range. We looked at each other and laughed and shared one last cigarette before he said his good byes and headed in the direction he was heading prior to stopping. The shower was awesome and for how hot it was the water was nice and cold. Oh yeah baby! Anyhow, by now I really did have no idea where I was in Bozhou. I knew it wasn't a big city but I had lost memory of all the roads I had turned so the first thing to do was to grab a map and begin mapping the city. I found a map in the little newspaper stand around the corner from my hotel and the lady helped me locate the road I was on, so from there I grabbed the pin yin from the two road signs near me Why two roads? Because I then knew how to hold the map at all times even after making many turns. So from there I then follow the map and change the Chinese characters for the pinyin on all the main roads. Why? So I then know where I am for my entire stay at the city. Due to not having much money I have planned to stay in each place for three or four nights to help save money of travel etc. So where is my hotel? It's located on the main shopping street in the city. The street is called Xinhua Lu and my hotel is located near the end where it runs into Renming Lu. There is no English sign but it is on the left hand side across from a China Mobile store. So in five hours I have walked most of the city, have sampled many of the streets snacks, found out where most of the night markets are and have a pretty general plan of what to pin point my zig zaggs on over the next few days. So now I have a few little blisters as its been a very hot and sweaty night. Amigo has just called to say good night and I have two cold beers sitting beside me. Isn't life just wonderful! Beers N Noodles toya.....shane ________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was The Commitments The album was 'The Soundtrack' Volume 1

Bozhou City Walk 2

Bozhou City Walk 2


Bozhou City Walk 1

Bozhou City Walk 1


Bozhou City Walk

Bozhou City Walk


Bozhou City Walk 3

Bozhou City Walk 3


Bozhou City Walk  4

Bozhou City Walk 4


Bozhou City Walk 5

Bozhou City Walk 5


Bozhou City Walk 6

Bozhou City Walk 6


Bozhou City Walk 7

Bozhou City Walk 7


Bozhou City Walk 8

Bozhou City Walk 8

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

Fan Ta Pagoda N An Evening On Lovers Bridge

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya, The plan was actually for me to leave today but how could one leave such a wonderful city when a beautiful girl calls and asks me to stay 'just another night'. So once again here I sit in Kaifeng City after an awesome day of temple walks and an evening spent on a bridge called 'Lovers Bridge'. When I went down to pay for another night the counter lady had such a huge smile on her face and she said 'Today you see Beautiful?' Yes I said, 'We have dinner and walk. Well, something along those lines. The first thing for the day was to head down to the south long distant bus station (across from the train station) to see about a bus to...anywhere. I still had no idea where I wanted to go, so when I got to the station I pointed to couple of characters on the board and the lady said Bozhou. Bozhou was in my LP but I really wasn't planning on going to a Medicine City. I then decided why not. I pointed to it so why not go and see what it really is like there. After reading about it I had confirmation of what I thought she was trying to tell me. Only one bus each day and it leaves at midday. I then decided it was time to go and check out what was known as Fan Ta. Amigo's mother had told me that it was worth going to have a look at so I found a Tuk Tuk driver who wasn't even looking at me or pestering me in anyway and showed him where I wanted to go. It was too hot to walk and I was already soaked through. It was time to give my feet a little rest.

TheLonely Planet is correct when it states that Fan Ta can be found in little back streets. It was wonderful to find it where it was. Nothing special had been done for it. The city hadn't given it a special place or jazzed up the area it was in. It cost 10 Yuan to enter and Fan Ta is the oldest Buddhist structure still standing in the city of Kaifeng. At the moment it's getting a well earned face clean but the scaffolding didn't get in the way of photos. It is a northern Song Dynasty style pagoda which is hexagonal in design. As the LP says, it is covered by one hundred and eight different Buddha images or tiles from top to bottom. It really is an awesome little pagoda to look at. The pagoda grounds are tiny and apart from the ticket booth and a few little rooms it is the only real structure to visit. After a few happy snaps you can enter the pagoda and climb its stone stairway to the top. Here you will be greeted by several locals sleeping the hot afternoon away in the pagodas cool interior. At the rear of the pagoda is another cool room where you will find more locals sleeping. There isn't much here to look at but the locals were fun.

I then grabbed a lift back to the south gate and after saying goodbye to my happy driver I then headed back out side the wall and made my way alongside it. I passed the south west gate, turned the corner and walked past the next gate until I reached the West Gate. I then zig zagged my way down to The Baogong Hu (lake) and walked around the south west side of it. I found the temple to Master Bao but decided I had had enough temples and passed it by. I probably should have visited it as from what I can remember Amigo said he (or his family) was responsible for most of the building in Kaifeng. The only other site besides Amigo that I wanted to see today was the 'Kai Feng Fu Jian Jie' which is located on the northern side of the lake closest to Zhongshan Lu. When you see the three lakes they are divided by a car road and a long thin bridge known as Lovers Bridge that Amigo and I happily crossed hand in hand later in the evening. Ohhhh, How Sweet! I paid my 35 Yuan to enter the 'Kai Feng Fu Jian Jie'I really had no idea what I was visiting. I knew it wasn't a temple but that was all I knew. What I found and believe it to be is a model of what the city nine meters below is like. It felt like walking around Sovereign Hill or Old Gipps Town in Victoria Australia. They even had a performance that took the performers and the crowd from building to building. Everyone was even dressed as they did in ancient times. It was like watching TV here in China.

When I returned to the hotel I told the counter lady where I would be going the following day. She had no idea where I was talking about. I repeated it and she sill had no idea. I then showed her the Chinese characters in the LP and she said Hozhou. No I said, Bozhou. No she said, Hozhou. This is where Chinese is so frustrating. Amigo and the lady at the bus station pronounce it with a B and the hotel lady says it with a H. I've no idea, but two against one so I'm betting the Hotel Lady is wrong! Ha Ha! I met Amigo across from the Taoist Temple and we headed back down to Baogong Hu (lake). As we walked around the lake the sun faded slowly away and soon everything was softly lit by neon's. I really love old cities at night here in China. Most of them don't have the harsh and flashy neon's like most other cities have. The lighting around the lake was pretty much as romantic as it gets. We passed elderly groups who were practicing everything from the trumpet to dancing to the flute to the Er Hu. We soon arrived at 'Lovers Bridge' and made our way towards the music coming from the dark pagoda in the centre. Here we found a heap of people gathered around to watch and listen to a singing competition that was happening between many friends. There were several musicians and several singers all who performed a song each. Definitely not everyone's taste but I always love to stop and listen to the ladies with their squeaky voices singing romantic ballads or songs from the revolution. We sat together and allowed the cool breeze to sweep over us just as the music was. We then finished crossing the bridge and made our way to a huge screen in one of the cities squares. Here they play free movies for the people each night during summer. This night there was a Jackie Chan movie on but I had never seen it or heard of it. Amigo began translating it for me but we soon got sick of that and headed for noodles instead. After noodles we headed to the night market for some more snacks. Both our favourite is the Jian Bing Gou Zi. Kind of like a pancake with meat and a crusty bread type thing squashed inside. Totally awesome to eat! As this was our last night together until October we slowly walked to where we could grab a cab for her to take her home. How sad we both were when we parted and the taxi took her hand from mine. I slowly walked the streets wondering what the future will hold. I then decided it is best not to wonder. We have already made plans to see each other in October. Best concentrate on that than anything negative that can easily happen here in China in a traditional city full of traditional families, one of whom is a very traditional mother. The odds are stacked against us I'm afraid! Beers N Noodles toya.....shane _________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was 'Coverdale & Page The album was their awesome self titled release!

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk


Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (1)

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (1)


Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (2)

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (2)


Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (3)

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (3)


Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (4)

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (4)


Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (5)

Kaifeng - City Walls N Walk (5)


Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda

Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda


Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (1)

Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (1)


Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (2)

Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (2)


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Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (3)


Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (4)

Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (4)


Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (5)

Kaifeng - Fan Ta Pagoda (5)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (1)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (1)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (2)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (2)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (3)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (3)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (4)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (4)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (5)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (5)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (6)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (6)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (7)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (7)


Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (8)

Kaifeng - Fu Jia Jie (8)

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