A Travellerspoint blog

August 2005

Tianyang Return - Bad Day - INTERNET HACKER

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

Just thought I'd tell you a little story of what just happened to me. I began my little holiday at the beginning of July and by the time I left Beihai on the coast I was locked out of my eddakath2@yahoo.com email address. I didn't think much of it at the time. I tried a few times to get in with no luck, so I opened a new address and found it hard to get into it each time I tried, so in the end I just stopped email all together.

A few nights ago I left the boarder of Tibet and spent a few nights on buses to get home. I was going to stay the night in Dali and continue today BUT, luckily I didn't. I arrived home 5am this morning and slept until mid day. After showering two people from my school arrived to clean my place to ready it for the next teacher. When they found me here they were very suprised and asked why I was not in Australia. I was very confused as to why they would ask this question.

They then proceeded to explain.....Bucklands in Yangshuo China had received an email FROM ME (eddakath2@yahoo.com) on the 8th August telling them that I was leaving China for Australia due to something unexpected etc etc and thanks very much etc etc and to forward all my belongings to my parents PO Box at my expense...Huh? What the!

NOT ONLY that...Bucklands emailed ME? (the other me) back asking a series of questions as to why I was leaving when I have always been happy here. On the 10th August they received a 2nd email from (me, the other me) my email address (the one I've been locked out of for over a month and a half!) just making sure they received the first email and thanks very much etc etc. So a new teacher had been arranged and was on their way tomorrow to begin on the 1st September and I was basicly out of a job and out of my little Tianyang County. I was so shocked and felt so sick. Infact I was dumbfounded and couldn't comprehend what was going on and why it was happening.

LUCKILY, after discussions I am to stay where I am and the new teacher to go elsewhere. I love it here and do not want to move for some time. Oh, they also played with my bank accounts.

So, here is what we have....it is someone close to me, A FRIEND, but not someone close enough to know that my parents closed their PO Box 2 years ago. This person must have my old travel card. BUT, they are also someone close enough for me to write to now as they knew to email Bucklands and to add in Yang Yang. I send group emails every so often but only to a selected group of people, NOT my entire address book. They must also know computers and or someone who knows computers to get into my email address in the first place. Putting all those details together, this person is my friend. There are several Chinese names in my address book, how would a stranger know to add in Yang Yang?

I must say I am living in a state of confusion at present. BEWARE of email and certain things that are to be done by email. If it HAS to be done by email, explain over the phone that you will do ONE or TWO little things extra to confirm your identity after the email. I can not explain any of the above or why someone would want to do this to me. All I know is that now I have no money left, an email address I can't get into and I am one friend less. I have contacted the Police and my bank in Australia who will do all they can to help. Other that that, there really is not much more I can do.

One day a simple sign or hint will come my way as to who this person is, it always does. One thing I have learnt in life is that you always get caught out. It may not be directly after the fact. Years may go by, but in the end wrong doings always seem to catch up with you. I haven't always been such a 'good boy' in life, I've had to learn the hard way, well I hope I've learnt! Anyhow, to whomever is reading this...be careful, be very very careful whilst playing in cyberspace. People and things around you are not always what and whom they seem!

My biggest hint: NEVER use internet cafe's for net banking!

Oh The World Is Spinning

Oh The World Is Spinning

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

Kunming Again (Summer Break)

We arrived in Kunming around 4:00am. The passengers settled enough to be quiet and try to sleep. By the sounds of the snoring many did. Around 5am two young children around the age of four began running up and down the isles. Their parents didn't say a word. I could hear angry breathing from several passengers. The parents actually began laughing at them at one stage until I sat up and yelled, 'shut those damn kids up before I throw them off the bus!' Of course they wouldn't have understood the words but the surely understood the tones. I was so tired and had travelled too many kms in such a short time, but for some reason I wanted to get home as soon as I could.

By then it was too late, I was wide awake yet half asleep. In other words, any chance of sleep had left me. I grabbed my pack and headed out onto the street. I was so tired that I forgot that the train station is about a 3 minute walk from the bus station and stopped a cab and asked him to take me to the train station. He laughed and pointed to the end of the road. Oh yeah, I'm in Kunming. Ta mate I said and purchased a Hard Sleeper to Baise on the over night train.

I grabbed a cab to the Camellia Hotel, booked a dorm bed until 4:00pm, showered and slept all day. I headed to the City Café for dinner and sat chatting to a guy from Israel for an hour before taking a taxi to the train station and boarding the train. The train was hot and stuffy and I flickered in and out of sleep. We arrived in to Baise around 4am and I was too tired to wait until 7am for the first buses to begin their journey to Tianyang. I stood on the road side and finally a guy on a motorbike stopped. I paid him 50 Yuan to take me home to the comfort of my Tianyang and my bed.

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

Zhongdian (Shangrila) (Summer Break)

Thursday, 25th August 2005

After breakfast we were on the 7:30am bus, not 8:30. The return trip took only three hours to Deqin. The bus slipped around all over the road no matter how slow the driver went. When we arrived in Deqin we sat for a feed of Joutsa and went for a town walk. We caught the 12:00 bus to Zhongdian which, due to poor weather conditions took nine hours.

A couple of hours into the journey our bus came within centimetres of being pushed over the edge. A truck coming in the opposite direction did not move over enough for us. The driver realised as the very last moment and we both put the brakes on and began to slide. We slid the wrong way which was towards the edge. The truck finally came to a halt with its blinkers a couple of centimetres from the side of the bus. We where only a few centimetres from going over the edge. The Chinese girl sitting next to me, whom I named Snack bar Jenny due to her constant eating burst into tears and an old Chinese couple sitting up the back began chanting something in either Chinese or a Naxi dialect. I held Snack bar Jenny until she stopped crying and looked down the mountain side. It was a long way down to the Mekong River. I thought of the broken bus bodies I saw yesterday. We then continued on our journey with Snack bar Jenny eating beside me.

When we arrived in Zhongdian it was freezing cold. Snack bar Jenny and I headed to the Tibetan Hotel/Cafe. Mama (yes, this is her actual English name) was happy to see me and got a cold 'Dali Snow Beer' for me and a ginger and honey tea for Jenny. She also reminded me to eat and drink some warm water through out the evening.

Friday, 26th August 2005

Rose for breakfast and chatted to some American Students along with a couple of Canadians. I then packed my bag and headed to the bus station. There wasn't a bus until nearing evening so I purchased my ticket and headed back to the Tibetan Café to spend the day reading and talking. I threw in a couple of hours walking around town but it was too cold and miserable and I spent most of it indoors.

After dinner I headed back to the bus station and boarded the bus. The trip was typical and sleepless. We stopped and started a billion times, drove at a thousand miles an hour, a million cigarettes were smoked by all and couple MP3's players were keeping not only their owners awake but everyone else as well. I wonder sometimes if on sleeper buses, if the driver sees you boarding the bus with headphones on, does he confiscate them and give them back upon leaving.

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

Mingyong (Glacier) Adventure (Summer Break)

Tuesday, 23rd August 2005

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you After breakfast French and I left Deqin and bussed it 7 hours to Mingyong. It was supposed to take only two hours but with the loading and unloading of everything from food stuffs to animals along the way it honestly took us nearing seven hours. We were hoping to do the walk and head back on the 8:30 bus the following morning. We ended up arriving in Mingyong nearing evening and stayed in a comfortable guesthouse right beside a gushing river. I sat outback and drank a few beers and watched the water come racing from the mountains. After it got dark it got too cold to sit outside, so my sandals and I headed back inside. There was a little bar attached to the guesthouse. It was empty so I sat in the warmth to relax and read.

The bus ride from Deqin beat the one from Zhongdian to Deqin. It was very scary in parts. We were driving so high up and the roads were not only dirt but very wet. Several bus bodies were spotted below. I hoped we wouldn't end up down there with them and I'm sure those whom were riding in those broken bus bodies were thinking the same thing.

Wednesday, 24th August 2005

After a cold shower and breakfast we headed up the mountain (Kawa Karpo or Taizi Shan, 6740 meters) to the Kawa Karpo Peak to view Mingyong Glacier (Mingyong Bingchuan) which is 12km in length. Breathing was very difficult and it took several hours to get there. Most Chinese tourists made the journey on the back of a donkey. Pretty smart move I'd say but I wouldn't have forgiven my self later in the day. It was the clearest day Mingyong had had for weeks, but the mountain top was still covered by cloud. We sat amongst a million Tibetan prayer flags relaxing and staring. I know it's just ice but it was my first glacier and I was just opposite it on a viewing platform. By the time we arrived at the platform we were completely stuffed. I was glad I only had my sandals on and was down to my singlet top.

After a couple photos and getting our breath back we headed back to the halfway point which was at Lotus Temple (Lianhua Miao) and a little shed that sold tea. We then decided to do the White Lotus Temple walk which was an hour back up the hill in the opposite direction. Breathing was difficult so we had to stop every ten minutes to gather our breath. I think we were nearing 4000 meters and parts of the trail were getting steep. There wasn't much zig zagging on this pathway, a lot of it pretty much straight up!

We finally reached the temple there we sat with the Lama. He was a happy man and we all pat and played with his cat for an hour or more. Just as we were leaving it began to rain and rain it did. We got soaked. My umbrella done its best but I still got soaked so I ended up putting it away. We were doing our best to walk down hill in what was now becoming a muddy river of water mixed with donkey sh*t. We finally made it home to find hot water for the shower. We sat with the family who ran the guesthouse around little bowls of coals to keep warm. Mingyong is such a beautiful little town. It's the type of town where herds of goat etc roam up and down the tiny main road. The family cooked us dinner and helped us keep warm for the evening by filling up our little coal bowls and tea mugs.

Mingyong  - Not your usual traffic

Mingyong - Not your usual traffic


Mingyong  - Not your usual traffic 2

Mingyong - Not your usual traffic 2


Mingyong  - Not your usual traffic 3

Mingyong - Not your usual traffic 3


Mingyong 5

Mingyong 5


Mingyong 6

Mingyong 6


Mingyong 8

Mingyong 8


Mingyong 9

Mingyong 9


Mingyong Glacier

Mingyong Glacier


Mingyong Glacier 3

Mingyong Glacier 3


Mingyong Village

Mingyong Village

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

Deqin (Shangrila) Adventure (Summer Break)

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

We rose to find Melanie much too sick to travel, especially if it meant going higher. They got themselves another room so Melanie could sleep in comfort and quiet. I finished packing my bag and Debbs and I took their tickets to the bus station. Here I returned one and sold the other to a Chinese guy going my way. Debbs and I said our good byes and sadly parted. They were great Irish Gals and a heap of fun to travel with. It was a pity Melanie had fallen ill. They were planning to head downwards, maybe back to Lijiang before heading to Chengdu.

I boarded the bus and a fellow westerner followed me.

We sat together and began asking each other the usual questions. He was French and his English was terrible. My French was worse as I don't know any French so I didn't hold it against him. I spoke and I nodded and smiled in confusion as to what he was saying. Over the seven hour journey to Deqin I came to understand him a lot better as he slowed down his speech to help me. The bus journey offered some of the most awesome views and it was well worth the seven hours it took.

Just breathtaking, some of the driving and the roads were a little scary but we made it in one piece.

Upon our arrival we found rooms at the Tibetan Hotel (another, I'm sure there is a Tibetan Hotel in every town and village around here) and sat for dumplings and noodle soup with a French girl who is here in China studying 'Tea Science'. Strange but true. What tea science is I still have no idea. I understood it to be the studying of how to and where to grow tea.

The French girl and her rather cute friend had gone to the Mingyong Glacier the day before.

It's a 12km wall of ice. They said it's a good 5 to 6 hour walk (the day) and the only problem is, the only bus goes at 2:30pm and the only bus coming back is 8:30am the following morning, so you have to stay the night, OR you could hire a van for about 200 Yuan a day and they drive you there, wait for you and drive you home again.

What fun is that? I'll take my chances and stay in Mingyong.

Deqin was a great little town. It is nestled in a huge valley and surrounded by hills on three sides. I was so happy to be out of Zhongdian. I didn't think a lot of the town at all really. Maybe my visit to the Monastery dulled my senses along with the many monks begging for money on the streets. It sounds harsh but mate, if you want so spend your life in peace and harmony or what ever you do, go and get a job and pay for it yourself, don't ask me to pay for your trip to Nirvana! We spent the night walking and drinking beer at a local little family restaurant.

They continually smiled at us throughout the evening.

Beers N Noodles to you...shane

Dequin 1

Dequin 1


Dequin 2 - Local Peoples Hitchin a Ride

Dequin 2 - Local Peoples Hitchin a Ride

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