A Travellerspoint blog

April 2015

Wasn't too impressed

Someone who lives here told me not to go to Kaifeng because it is boring. He was right. We are not on speaking terms anymore, so when I got here, I didn't have much to do, besides visiting the two main sites.

The temple of the chief minister is the main temple in town and it really is beautiful. It would have been peaceful as well, if not for the traffic jam on the main pathways. It was labour day in China, so that must have been the reason for it. There was also a really nice vegetarian restaurant that was run by monks, so I wandered around the grounds and had some fresh tofu and noodles. Pretty sure the noodles were a tricky upsell, but I didn't know what else to order, besides tofu so the waitress brought me some of the noodles that I noticed everyone else was eating. Everything was nice anyway, if a little overpriced. I assume the monks get to keep the profits.

I went to the other main tourist draw, which is an ancient guild hall. The ornately designed architecture and actual peaceful courtyard was worth the entry fee of five dollars. The museum inside is all in Chinese, so don't expect to "immerse" yourself into it, as the Lonely Planet said. There was also a scale model of a famous painting called "Along the river during the Qing Ming festival" to examine.

My host texted me asking when I was coming over, and she said 7 p.m. would be best. I said fine and then went to the museum, hoping to see a version of this painting there. The real one is in Beijing and is only displayed at certain times during the year. It actually is quite the engrossing piece of artwork, intricately detailed and lively. It shows the life of the city during the tomb sweeping festival, some people call it China's Mona Lisa, it's that well known around here.

After all this I was insanely tired. Not sure why, but I haven't been sleeping past 6:30 a.m. recently, due to some very very faint music played every morning from god knows where. I guess I'm becoming a light sleeper in my old age. I'm starting to need naps I think.

I went to the top floor of the museum (which is closed, unlike what the guidebook said) and promptly took a nap on one of the soft benches. Nobody told me to wake up, so I stayed there for an hour and then went to get some street food dinner.

There is a night market not far from the museum with some muslim food, so I went to find this "lamb in a packet of bread". I watched the woman make it and she slathered it with some kind of grey coloured lard... um... pass! No thank you. Instead, I picked up a vegetarian sandwich made with naan bread.

In addition to this, there is something called "almond tea" that you are supposed to drink. In actuality, it's like a cornstarch pudding, more than a tea, and you eat it with a spoon. On top of the pudding, the vendor sprinkled sesame seeds, ground almond, candied fruit and other deliciousness. It was awesome. So I sat down with my dinner and waited until it was time to find my host. At around 7, I went to the university area of town, where my host's cafe was. I didn't end up finding her until 8. I had some strange directions, and no one had ever heard of this cafe. Finally, I just went to an internet cafe and asked if they could call this lady and get her to come over and pick me up. She did, and she was only three doors down from where I had given up. This host is a friend of an actual person on couchsurfing, but he didn't live in Kaifeng anymore, so he sent me here. He told me the sign was only in Chinese, so when I saw a sign that said "coffee" in English, I assumed that wasn't it. In fact, it did have a sign in English. And here I am. I immediately asked (via a translating website on my host's computer) if I could go to sleep, assuming there was a back room somewhere with a cot or something. She said not until 10 p.m. I must have had a sad look on my face, because she immediately changed her mind and chased the customers out so that I could sleep on the floor of the cafe. Then, I felt sorry and tried to get her to stay open, like normal, but she wouldn't hear it. Ahhh, the classic Chinese guilt trip thing again. We planned to go for donkey soup in the morning. Yeah really. And then I would go to a woodblock printing town in the afternoon. What I didn't realize though, was that I would be LOCKED IN here until 10 a.m., when she said she would come and get me. The cafe is perched on top of a hair salon, which is locked securely with a bicycle U-lock. So here I am with nothing but a laptop and an empty cafe.

Temple of the chief minister

Temple of the chief minister


Temple of the chief minister

Temple of the chief minister


Me vs. tofu

Me vs. tofu


Me vs. noodles

Me vs. noodles


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Ancient guild hall

Ancient guild hall


Making woodcut prints

Making woodcut prints


Cool statue

Cool statue


Along the river during the Qing Ming festival

Along the river during the Qing Ming festival


Almond tea

Almond tea


Making the bread packets

Making the bread packets


me vs. naan sandwich

me vs. naan sandwich

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

Yujiacun stone village

The next day we went our separate ways. Madelleine and Laura wanted to get closer to Beijing, so they went to Baoding, a bland city (I think) because I had no information about it. So, I went to Yujiacun, a small village entirely constructed of stones, for real. There was even a wonky one built by a guy that wanted to see Beijing from there. Today, Beijing is two hours away by express train. Must've been a crazy dream 500 years ago, when the house was built.

I had some noodles for lunch again but they were the most ridiculously salty things I'd ever had in my life. I guess when you're the only noodle show in town, you can afford to do that.

From there, I tried to get a bus home, and I would've been just in time for one of them, but these retards waved it away. They had their own tour bus back, so they didn't need the public bus. Who cares about the Canadian sitting here waiting right? I had to wait another hour for the next one, eventually a group of funny ladies sat down next to me and gave me some sunflower seeds and dates. Together we waited a long time.

We took the bus back when it finally came, I fell asleep and when I woke up they were gone. I took another bus back to Shijiazhuang, then another to the train station, which is new and not on my map. The next train to Jiaozuo was at 1:30 a.m. I reluctantly took it, even though there were no seats.

I found a little alley to eat weird things in, and then a bunch of people tried to talk tome as I wrote and tried to kill time by drinking a lot of beer and eating a lot of duck blood by accident.

On the bus to Yujiacun

On the bus to Yujiacun


The bus to Yujiacun

The bus to Yujiacun


Stone museum

Stone museum


You have to enter the scenic area!

You have to enter the scenic area!


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun family tree

Yujiacun family tree


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun coal delivery

Yujiacun coal delivery


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Salty noodles gross

Salty noodles gross


Yujiacun

Yujiacun


Shijiazhuang train station

Shijiazhuang train station


Shijiazhuang train station

Shijiazhuang train station


I think it's duck blood

I think it's duck blood


Is it duck blood?

Is it duck blood?


Me and the chef

Me and the chef


Street food

Street food


Me and random drunk Chinese guy

Me and random drunk Chinese guy


WHEN IS THE TRAIN COMING?

WHEN IS THE TRAIN COMING?

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

Communing with the goddess Guanyin

In the morning, some loud and shrill Chinese opera woke me up at about 7 a.m. I wondered if this was part of the government housing, but Liu said no, he didn't know what it was, but they played it every day.

He was going to Beijing for the weekend, so he brought us to a very nice hotel that doesn't normally accept foreigners, which we split three ways, ending up at about $10 each, nice.

Liu had to go to work and we went to Zhengding. I grabbed an ear of corn, and we headed out. The city itself was a little disappointing, because it's just a suburb of Shijiazhuang. Once we got to the temples though, it was peaceful and relaxing. There were five in the guidebook and we saw all of them, even though one was closed by the time we got there.

Longxing temple was the most famous, so we went there first. On a Friday, it's less busy than I'm used to, so I soaked up the peaceful uncrowdedness of the day.

This was hands down the best temple I've seen so far. As you know, if you've been following this blog for a while, I've been to a lot. On the outside, it resembled any other temple, but once you step inside the pavilions, it's absolutely breathtaking.

In the first one, there were a few golden deities but once around the corner, there were Ming dynasty frescoes on every surface. At the back, the goddess Guanyin was resting in an explosion of intricate carpentry. No photos allowed folks, go see it yourself.

There's also a two faced bronze buddha statue and a revolving library bookcase, for ancient sutras. Monks believed it was good luck to push them around in circles.

Guanyin was again represented as a giant bronze colossus with at least 20 arms. She lives in the pavilion of "great mercy", so I kneeled down and asked her if I could have some and I'm not joking, she answered. She said very loudly and clearly, "You already have it", and I knew it was true. After so many failures and disappointing job assignments, I am extremely happy to be warmly welcomed back to China. Guanyin didn't need to tell me that, I already knew it was a merciful act of the universe or whathaveyou.

After spending a few moments basking in the glow of this incredible monument, we went back to the main street and found a pancake place. I had been craving noodles all morning but I was distracted by the deep fried goodies, when out of the corner of my eye, I saw a noodle table... yesssssssss. Noodles for lunch, finally. I also introduced Madelleine to some Chinese pastries that I love and she liked them a lot.

From there, we went to Kai Yuan temple, which had a giant bixi (turtle-beast) that some construction workers found when digging up a street in 2000. There was another old white man from England who I said hi to, but I still feel very skeptical about all old single guys in Asia, especially this one, because he kind of followed us from the first temple, and then down the street after this one.

We walked to another pagoda which was closed and then a monastery, where I again tried to ask buddha for help, but I didn't have a clear question this time, so it didn't work. Madelleine and Laura's big idea was to see the mixture of Islam and Buddhism in western China, so we looked at a mosque and Laura practiced her Chinese on some hobby farmers (she's really good).

We walked back to the bus and I got some ice cream. We rode the bus home with a woman who needed her parasol to find off the sun's rays at 6 p.m. inside the bus. Not joking. She had also managed to kick my ice cream cup, as I was trying to throw it out, so she deserves to be publicly shamed for this act, I don't care.

We got a little confused on the way home, but after asking a bunch of people we finally made it. We ordered some street soup, the kind with the bread in it like in Xi'an, and some barbecued bread on top of that. Gluten-tastic.

Laura surprisingly couldn't communicate vegetarian to them so she finally had to bring her own food from the small marked behind the street. Our soup was mostly vegetarian so she had some of that as well.

The we went back to the hotel and I fell quickly asleep AFTER doing a mini facial first, of course.

Communist housing

Communist housing


Zhengding

Zhengding


Longxing temple

Longxing temple


Longxing temple

Longxing temple


Longxing temple

Longxing temple


Longxing temple

Longxing temple


Rotating bookcase

Rotating bookcase


Me and bookcase

Me and bookcase


Bixi

Bixi


Guanyin

Guanyin


Bixi

Bixi


Kai Yuan temple

Kai Yuan temple


Kai Yuan temple

Kai Yuan temple


Kai Yuan temple

Kai Yuan temple


Kai Yuan temple

Kai Yuan temple


Another pagoda

Another pagoda


pagoda

pagoda


Laura and farmers

Laura and farmers


City wall under construction

City wall under construction


City wall under construction

City wall under construction


Monastery

Monastery


Monastery

Monastery


Anti-graffiti, graffiti

Anti-graffiti, graffiti


Ice cream

Ice cream


Lady on the bus with parasol

Lady on the bus with parasol


I did a facial

I did a facial

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

Couchsurfing with Xiao Liu

We had a four day weekend because of my school's sports day on Thursday and Friday. So, I asked my couchsurfers Madelleine and Laura if I could follow them for a while. They were headed to Zhengding, a small suburb of Shijiazhuang, which has a larger number of pagodas and temples than most places do.

I took the bus on Thursday morning and headed to Shijiazhuang. It was completely empty, that's why I love the bus. About two hours into the bus ride though, we stopped at the entrance of the highway and had to get off. I thought it had broken down (again), so I took pictures thinking it was funny. It was not funny when we had to change buses. The new but had a lot of people already on it and it also smelled like farts. I sat next to a dirty old man who was quite possibly the source of the smell, however, it was all encompassing, so there was no way to detect the exact location of the fart epicentre.

Anyways, mostly I just dozed all the way to Shijiazhuang after I drank a beer on the frontier of Henan and Hebei provinces. Suddenly, I was awoken by the bus driver. He was about to throw me off. Where was the bus station? Oh, about 5 km south of this random place we're dropping you off at. Greeeaaaaat.

So, I called Xiao Liu, he was our host for the night. Earlier he had confirmed his friend wasn't going to stay with him anymore, so his extra bed was free and so was his floor. He only had one extra single bed. I had originally assumed he had a giant place like I do. Welcome to China, Louise, again. Not every has every luxury like you, OKAY?! Gawd. Later, Madelleine and Laura let me have the bed, since they already had sleeping bags. Thanks guyssssssss.

Liu told the taxi driver where to go, but it would be $20. I asked him to take me to any city bus stop, but that would be $3.50. Fine. He drove me about 1 km in the direction I was already going to walk by myself. I was mad so I gave him $1.50, slammed the door and caught the bus to town. Did I mention I hate taxis? Something like this happens every time I try to take one by myself.

I had the Chinese characters for the bus stop I needed, so it was no problem to get there. The only problem was that I was about two hours early for meeting Liu and my French friends were probably still eating lunch somewhere. I had my peanut butter sandwich in my bag, but that was it. After wandering around the intersection for an hour, Madelleine and Laura showed up. We bought Liu some sweets and I had a yogurtsicle.

At around 6:30, Liu met us and took us to his government built apartment via a series of twists and turns that I immediately forgot. So we all got to stay in communist housing! Amazing! After a minute, I thought about it, and realized my housing is probably also communist housing, on campus at a university established in the early 20th century. Right? Liu was new in town so he didn't know really where we should eat. We stopped at the first dumpling shop, ordered 40 vegetarian ones and talked about life and stuff, as you do... We went back, took showers and went to bed. I was grateful for my bed but I think Madelleine and Laura were alright on the floor, I hope.

We stopped for some reason

We stopped for some reason


Get off the bus!

Get off the bus!


The airplane hangar on the frontier

The airplane hangar on the frontier

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

Lots of old stuff again

In the morning, I took the bus to the Luoyang Museum which is HUGE. It was raining heavily, so Courtney gave me an umbrella and even an entire warm up suit that she got for volunteering. It's bright blue and I love it!

There were lots of old things there again. The most interesting things were the small figurines that were buried with people when they died. They were a substitute for when the practice of burying one's slaves alive was abolished. I had already seen these figurines before, but to amass such a wide array of them in one place was intriguing.

I lost Courtney's umbrella and then bought her the first one I saw, which happened to be a children's umbrella, although I didn't notice until I gave it to her when I got back.

Luoyang Museum

Luoyang Museum


Burial figurines

Burial figurines


Ceramic camel

Ceramic camel


Pagodas

Pagodas


Old pot

Old pot

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

Oldest Buddhist temple in China

I went to Luoyang again and stayed with Courtney and Chris again. Courtney was busy volunteering, so Chris and I went to the White Horse Temple without her. It was drizzling and cold all morning and when Chris came to meet me at the train station, for some reason he was wearing a T-shirt and sandals. I meekly offered him my extra shirt and later he said it saved his life. He looked a little ridiculous in argyle and a cowl neck, but what can you do?

The temple was restored and crowded, so not unlike most others, even though it's the oldest one in China. There were also life-size replicas of other countries' temples, which felt a lot like Disney World, but were nice nonetheless.

At the back of the complex was a nice garden with more peonies and some turtles in what Chris described as "radioactive ooze" which would soon turn them into ninja turtles.

We had some tofu and vegetables for lunch and some random guy wanted a picture of us because he saw us on the bus on the way to the temple. Chris can speak Chinese very well, that's how he knew what his reason was.

By the time we got home, Courtney was on her way. She taught me a gave called Gloom which I somehow won, and then we went to dinner with a friend of theirs who is leaving soon for Japan. They even had sweet and sour pork there. Didn't know that was a real Chinese dish, but voila.

White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple


White Horse Temple

White Horse Temple

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

Longman Grottoes

This is one of the best things I have seen in China so far. Still doesn't beat Zhangjiajie, but it comes in second place, I would say.

These are some super old carvings in the rock outside of Luoyang. There's like 10,000 of them, or more. A ton of them have been destroyed in the cultural revolution but even more of them have been stolen and/or sold to famous museums all over the world. Really sad, but the place was still awesome despite all that.

Lucky for me, Courtney was volunteering out there, helping the five foreigners that might visit the site that day, speaking English to them, and taking photos with Chinese people. So, the tourism department of the city paid for her cab ride, and I got to come along with her. Yippee!

I wandered along both sides of the river, completely enraptured by the fantastical environment. Wow, just speechless.

In addition to all the buddhist statues, there was a garden around the tomb of a famous ancient Chinese poet and also the summer home of the prime minister of China from the 30s.

Really really good times this weekend, despite the frustrations! I hope I go back next weekend to see the White Horse temple, the oldest still standing in China.

Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Yellow River

Yellow River


Yellow River

Yellow River


Yellow River

Yellow River


Yellow River

Yellow River


Yellow River

Yellow River


Small neat museum

Small neat museum


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Longman grottoes

Longman grottoes


Summer house of the prime minister in the 30s

Summer house of the prime minister in the 30s


Summer house

Summer house


Poet's tomb garden

Poet's tomb garden


Panorama from Wikipedia

Panorama from Wikipedia

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

Peony festival!

Earlier in the week, I sent out an email to some of my students and people who might be interested in coming to Luoyang. I expected no one to have any time to go, but I thought it would be cool to see who would answer.

I sent one to this guy who I wanted to do some part time work for tutoring kids in their homes in the evenings and such. No one answered and said they wanted to go, so I just started looking for my own couchsurfing host. I found one on like, Wednesday or something.

For some reason, this guy called "Flydog" sent the email to all of his students at the other university in town. On Friday, he told me that "some" students were going to come with me. Um? No? I already have a plan. I told him, they could come, but I would not be staying with them and they have to find their own place to stay. I didn't get any response, so I just figured they weren't coming.

On Saturday morning, Flydog jumped on the bus and said that these people are coming now. There is no room on the bus, so they are coming on the next one. Oh...good...god... I just say fine and I don't have a cell phone, so I figured they would go away.

A few minutes into the bus ride, this young woman comes over and gets the older woman sitting beside me to switch seats with her.

"Hi I'm bebe's friend! We will come with you!" "Um, I don't know who Bebe is..." "Oh... they are coming on the next bus!"

What? Who are you and who are these people? I tell Bebe's friend that I want to sleep, so I do all the way to Luoyang. When we are close, I call Courtney from Bebe's friend's phone and warn her about the Chinese people. She is a little irritated and I tell her I will explain later.

Bebe's friend decides she won't come after all, and goes home. But, it's too late, Bebe's friend already gave Courtney's number to everyone! Oh my. She gets about 50,000 texts and phone calls, from a bunch of Chinese people, and we block every one. I think this is really rude of Flydog. I was only inviting him, not a bunch of strangers I don't know! If the races were reversed, do you think the outcome would've been different? If I was Chinese, would he have sent a random white person to travel with me? I don't think so.

Anyway, after all that, I apologized profusely to Courtney but she seemed to take it all in stride. I was insanely embarrassed. Courtney had to do some shopping and so she drew me a map and I went to see all the peonies at Wangcheng park for the peony festival.

The smell, as you can imagine, was intoxicating. China is full of endless wafts of coal smoke, vehicle exhaust, factory pollution and the scent of feces and urine from public toilets. This was just fantastic for me. I just stood in the middle of all the flowers and breathed in, savouring every second. It was well worth the $10 entrance ticket. I stayed in the peonies for as long as I could, enjoying every single breath and drawing it out all day. I wandered around every inch of the park (except the really sad zoo area) and took a nap in a replica temple complex from the Zhou dynasty.

After the peonies, I met Courtney and her boyfriend Chris in the old part of town for some street food and chicken wings. Nom nom nom. I had some REALLY spicy wings that made me cry, lots of beer and paid for the whole thing because I felt so bad about the morning's drama. We went back to their place, Courtney gave me a homemade brownie (!!!) I didn't know when I would get another one, so I ate that thing nice and slowlyyyyyyyyyy.

Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Peony festival

Peony festival


Me vs. street food squid

Me vs. street food squid


Our SPICY chicken wings

Our SPICY chicken wings

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

Terracotta warriors hoax

I had to go to the terracotta warriors alone because Carl thought the line would be too long. It was a big mess and lots of people were cutting in, so I just cut in too. He didn't like it so he left.

I got there and I just thought everything was so fake looking and inauthentic. They left some artifacts in the ground in a "haphazard" style. Like "oh look at how rugged this is, we just left these pieces here for you to look at, we didn't dig them out yet". Except they've been that way for forty years? I don't think so. The whole thing just stunk to me.

I read some things about it when I got back home, for example, China has always refused to let other countries' archaeologists examine the artifacts. Even UNESCO didn't push them to make them allow other scientists look at the statues and they still got heritage status! Hmmm, interesting... I'm no expert, but I've been to a lot of museums and I've seen a lot of old stuff. These things REALLY didn't look that old to me. Nevertheless, it was still an interesting thing to see, and it was nice to sort of fantasize about a crazy emperor that could have demanded such a fantastic burial ground. Who knows?

After spending $30 on that, I went back to the city to see the Muslim quarter, where I got pushed around in a giant crowd for a few hours and had some soup with bread in it. This, evidently, was the promised soup from yesterday. It was pretty good. The children serving it were entertaining. They gave you a number and when your soup was ready they yelled it out to anyone listening. I had to listen really hard because I am still not so good at numbers. I got my soup eventually.

I went home to the hotel and not 15 minutes after I had gotten there, Carl's friends came to check on me to see if I was OK. They said Carl was really worried. I didn't ask where Carl was. I just said thank you, yes I'm fine, and went to bed.

In the morning, I got the bus home, it took about 10 hours.

Some fur for sale

Some fur for sale


Terracotta warriors

Terracotta warriors


Terracotta warriors Pit 1

Terracotta warriors Pit 1


Terracotta warriors Pit 1

Terracotta warriors Pit 1


Terracotta warriors Pit 1

Terracotta warriors Pit 1


Terracotta warriors Pit 2

Terracotta warriors Pit 2


Terracotta warriors Pit 3

Terracotta warriors Pit 3


Terracotta warriors Pit 1

Terracotta warriors Pit 1


Terracotta warriors Pit 1

Terracotta warriors Pit 1


Terracotta warriors Pit 2

Terracotta warriors Pit 2


Terracotta warrior

Terracotta warrior


Terracotta warriors Pit 3

Terracotta warriors Pit 3


Bronze horses

Bronze horses


Chinese mosque

Chinese mosque


Chinese mosque

Chinese mosque


Drum tower

Drum tower


Getting something special made

Getting something special made


Bread soup place

Bread soup place


Bread soup place

Bread soup place


Muslim quarter

Muslim quarter


Terracotta warriors Pit 2

Terracotta warriors Pit 2


Terracotta warriors pit 1

Terracotta warriors pit 1


Terracotta warriors pit 2

Terracotta warriors pit 2

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

City walls in Xi'an in the rain

When we got to Xi'an I was exhausted. We went to the hotel and all I wanted to do was sleep and have a pee. I had a pee but then I didn't get to sleep.

We tromped all around town. First we went to the city walls. We didn't stay there long, and they wanted to go to some sort of poetry museum for $15. I really didn't want to go because it would be all in Chinese! No thanks! We had already come down from the wall at that point, so we couldn't go back up and walk around some more. I was a little sad.

We then went to the goose pagoda. It's dedicated to super monkey's master. It was raining like crazy. We walked all around looking for a special soup place. By the time we found it, it was closed. Instead, we went to a fantastic old fashioned Chinese place for dinner. I had a bowl of noodles that was one big fat giant noodle. Delicious. We also had cooked pig blood (!!!) and some satay and sweet milk with egg for dessert.

We walked all the way back to the hotel and I fell right asleep.

Archery place

Archery place


Gate to the wall

Gate to the wall


Archer building

Archer building


City walls

City walls


On top of the wall

On top of the wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


City wall

City wall


Making a special present

Making a special present


Making a special present

Making a special present


Me vs. spicy sandwich thing

Me vs. spicy sandwich thing


Old town

Old town


Giant fountain

Giant fountain


Goose pagoda

Goose pagoda


Beer in a saucer

Beer in a saucer


Carl at dinner

Carl at dinner


Me vs. gate

Me vs. gate

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

Late night in Zhengzhou

I met Carl at the bus station and we went to Zhengzhou to catch our 3 a.m. train to Xi'an. I figured that getting a hotel would be a waste of money and so we stayed up all night. We went all around trying to find wi fi so that I could get emails from my mom because my grandma looked like she was about to die (she didn't, BTW).

Finally we found a huge internet cafe and stayed there for like, three hours. We got some noodles and beer and then boarded the train.

I was angry that some people had taken my window seat. They wanted to change with me and I said no. I got my window seat. Screw them.

Huge internet cafe

Huge internet cafe


My window seat

My window seat

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