China Trip – To Chengdu

For our final day in Yangshuo we slept in, got a big breakfast at our hotel, and checked out. We rented two bikes for the rest of the day and had a blast biking along the Li river. Zoe was strapped to the back of my bike on a rattan seat. She seemed to really like it. The ride was awesome; we followed a paved road for a while then strayed off onto a dirt path. We then biked around Yangshuo and explored a crazy farmers market. They sold all kinds of fresh produce that was grown locally, and also sold all kinds of live animals ready for the table…rat, goose, dog, chickens…etc. Interesting and unappetizing.

We went out for pizza back in the tourist area near our hotel. Our cab picked us up at 4pm – Wendy helped us book it for cheap – to take us to the Guilin airport. We flew on China Southern to Chengdu which only took an hour. Again we were pleasantly surprised by an open seat for Zoe! The evening then took a downturn as our hostel ride wasn’t there to pick us up. I had arranged this a long time ago, but when a local let us use her cell to call they were amazed we had arrived. Mix hostel – a great place, but not organized. We took a cab, which ended up being cheaper.

When arriving they didn’t have us in their books, which shocked me since I had confirmed by email just last week. Regardless, they had a room open so we were tired and eager to sleep. Unfortunately the locals outside the hostel decided it was get-drunk-and-fight night. Finaly at 4AM the Chinese yelling, bottle breaking, and fighting ceased. It sucked. My throat still hurts and now my tongue is really sore and wierd. We still pushed through our sleepy state to wake early this morning for the trip the hostel ran to the panda center. yippee a whole zoo full of pandas! Zoe like them for a while, but was more interested in the ants. We rushed through the place during the early-entrance tour time, thankfully, since locals were allowed in free at 10 AM.

Today is the anniversary of the big earthquake last year, so it’s a local holiday and all the attractions are free. There have also been lots of special memorials all over town, and on TV. It became a madhouse as we were leaving, and supposedly Jackie Chan was visiting as part of the earthquake remembrance. We returned to the hostel, Zoe napped, we showered, packed up, and got directions to Emeishan.

Now we are in Baoguo at the Teddy Bear Hostel waiting for some dinner. The trek here was an adventure – a bus the the bus station, a 2 hour bus ride on a long-distance bus, then a 10 minute journey on a minibus. Again, we didn’t quite understand what we were doing most of the time and people just pointed and spoke chinese to us. We followed and arrived right in front of our hostel. Great. It’s a very nice place and we have our own bathroom! Tomorrow we venture up the mountain for two days.

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