Rainy Streets, Dumplings and Shopping

Trip Start Jan 31, 2011
Trip End Dec 15, 2011

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Flag of China  , Shaanxi,
Sunday, March 20, 2011

08:07 I think it was about 730 when the first food seller came through the carriage with his trolley of snacks and drinks, yelling that he'd arrived. I had a slight buffer from this by having my trusty earplugs, but even his volume penetrated the foam and I was made aware it was morning.
I lay for longer ignoring that it was before 8am. James dropped a bag on my head and I still managed to ignore waking up. I've succumbed though. Breakfast was a bag of chicken crisps and coffee.
The weather outside is grey, very very grey. Not helped by filthy windows. Apparently its about 4 degrees in Xi'An. Oh, my optimism about the warming weather in shanghai was short lived as the next day was cold and yesterday it rained. So looks like I need the jacket a while longer yet.
10:27 Yay! Wifi again! I've posted up a load of blogs now and I even got an email saying this!

Hi Zoe,
Congratulations! One of your TravelPod photos ( castle-gardens.jpg ) has been selected to be featured and has been added to our queue. Please keep in mind that we typically have several months worth of photos queued to be featured and it may take some time before yours is featured. You will be notified when your photo is featured on our main page.


The TravelPod Team

Wow! Actually I have 2 pics that will be featured! My one of the golden temple is also being included :D
12:45 Out for lunch, jade took us to a 100 year old restaurant where their speciality is dumplings. The feast cost 80Y, which is about 8 and apparently you can't get it anywhere else.
Half the group have gone to a normal restaurant and I was very indecisive about which I'd go to given that its twice as expensive as what we normally eat. Katrina made a very good point that it's better to regret something you have done than something you haven't, certainly in this case! So I came up for the feast. First we got some cold salads then the dumplings started coming out.
13:21 Lunch was very good, each dumpling was formed into a shape relating to its flavour, see the photos included. At the end we had a vegetable soup and I got 2 baby dumplings in mine. Apparently this means double happiness- she didn't give me a time scale however!
19:24 We went round muslim quarter and did some shopping. They seem to be Chinese first Muslim second, if that makes any sense at all. They sold all sorts of things, and once again the battle of trying to look at things without being too hassled began. All sellers yell hello at you, some shout T shirt, souvenir or the name of whatever you happen to be looking at - wow, I hadn't noticed i was looking at a t-shirt. Some just pointed at everything as you walked past glancing over. Avid pointing at all their goods, kinda weird. I'd love to just tell them all that if they just left people to look at their goods properly without being hassled they might find that people hover longer and actually buy something.  I bought some presents from one guy who spoke a fair amount of english so we had a conversation and a laugh, so he got some money out of me. I also bought my new favorite items - a set of black and yellow silk pyjamas.

Shortly after the market time we went out for another delicious dinner as a group. Jade buzzes around making sure we have everything we need, but barely ever sits down with us. I think she eats out on her own most of the time, and hardly eats anything, but has so much energy!

 22:14 It has been a knackering day, and we just did some of the local things, so I'm in bed with new silk pjs on which just feel amazing, and they will be my little luxury until it gets too warm to wear them, or Hong Kong, whichever comes first as I will send them back home and have something nice waiting for me on my return.

Seems a bit of a short one today, but then I feel we did a bit less.

Best thing - my jamas
Worst thing - the rain
Most Beautiful - my jamas!
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Zoe's Dad on

Zoe has been cruising down the Yangtse River and is now near amazing Guilin. She has been out of contact with no signal but hopes to find internet again once she is in Yanshou when she will catch us all up with her news.
Dear readers - have patience! The photos should be amazing.
Next weekend she is due in Hong Kong.
All I can say is keep watching this space.

Alex Baxter on

Hey Hunny!

So glad you're having an amazing time miss you loads,

Take care
Al xxxx

Zoe's Dad on

Zoe reports this morning that Yangshuo is "absolutely unbelievably amazing! The little town is lovely but these massive rocks have me gawping!"

She wondered if we had been to Yangshuo when, many years ago (just before she was born), we visited Guilin - we didn't, and if anything Yangshuo looks more extraordinary than Guilin itself.

Still out of internet reach, it seems. Can't wait for her photos and report!

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