River Yangtze

Trip Start Aug 12, 2007
Trip End Sep 28, 2007

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Wednesday, August 29, 2007


We want to see the Three Gorges Damn before getting on the Hydofoil, but it seems that this will be our starting point, so no need for a separate trip.  All well and good until we get on the Hydrofoil some way past the dam (damn!). It is a feat of engineering to tame that size river and if chinese propaganda is to be believed, it produces the power equivilent to 12 nuclear power stations.  Maybe it was worth relocated or those famers.  In the event of the dam collapsing, over 700,000 souls would be dead within 2 hours, which is exacly what happened back in the 70's with another dam that collapsed. Back then the goverment did very well in covering up this news to the rest of the world.

The river takes us through breathtaking 1000m+  gorges with sheer rockfaces rising dramatically out of the fast flowing river. Despite the river rising 175 meters since the dam was built, the gorges are still very dramatic. The photos dont really do them justice, but here they are all the same. Its nice to relax and meander past the spectacular scenery after the hectic train journey! The boat takes around 7 hours to reach Wanjian where we change to a bus to take us to Chongqing.

Helen befriends to children who seem to be abandoned by their parents.  She teaches them high-fives, which is all well and good until the cheeky monkeys decide to high-five you unannounced, every minute!  

It seems like days since weve seen another westerner.  Or had even half a conversation with anyone other than each other.  I have been reading Chairman Mao's biography and his foreign experiences.  It seemed to him that the rest of the world was not importent and nothing could be learned.  He left the country only twice and both times was to Russia.  This kind of shows in the majority of people here, whereas in other countries people seem to want to find out about where you are from and to try to talk to you on some level. The same is not true here......
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