I travelled so quickly through China is my last 3 weeks that I kinda pooped myself out. I spent 2 days in Guilin, 3 days in Yangshuo, then about 2.5 days in Xian. Poor Xian, the ancient capital of China. I really did not give it the proper time it deserved to get to the know the city. I quite literally did the highlights and skipped the rest.
I spent my last week in China stuffing my face with dumplings like the world was ending, and exploring some really beautiful places
This post is going to be short and sweet since tomorrow I start my trek around the Annapurna Cirucit (crazy!) and I probs won’t post again for at least 3 week.
I do want to set an intention for the trek. Setting an intention is one of those lame hippie habits I picked up from doing too much yoga but I like it. I set an intention for my year in China to be grateful for everything and it came too mind often during my year.
For this trip, which will be amazing but challenging, I want to be present. More then ever thoughts about money, work, relationships and the future are crowding it. I want to take in the beauty of the Himalayas and not stress about things I can’t control.
I like to share some of the sensory experiences of travel each weeks. Except smell since I can’t smell anything (yes its weird).
Taste: Xian has a huge Muslim population (it was the end route of the silk road) and today has a booming Muslim quarter which happened to have some of the best street food I’ve found in China. I have no idea what I ate but they through some chewy doughy noodles into a wok, cracked some eggs into it and fried it up with lots of peppers. We found ourselves a little table and feasted, much to the amusement of Chinese tourists (there were no other foreigners there so I think we did something wrong. Or something really right)
Feel: The plane taking off. Leaving China was so emotional but its quite a rush to be in the air and bound for a new destination. While travel in China has always been an adventure, it was so exciting to be bound for somewhere and somewhere totally out of my comfort zone.
See: I hiked Hua Shan in Xian which is legendary for being a dangerous hike, but I didn’t research ahead of time and ended up missing the interesting parts. I met up with two british men and one American. They were a cheerful bunch and said they kept being stopped for photos while hiking. At the hostel that night some Chinese girls were showing me their pictures of the mountain and then had the photos they had taken with those guys which was pretty hilarious to me. I never know what people do with the photos they take of me but apparently they just show them to their friends?
Hear: I took a raft down the Li River to see the amazing Karsts formations in Guilin. It was a bit misty and cold but I loved hearing the water as we floated along. IT was a few hours and I was fortunate enough to have met some other solo travelers that made a merry little party down the river. Taking a raft there is a very iconic thing to do and I was so happy to see this beautiful part of china.
This is a total side note, but when you get to china you have to fill out this little departure card and I was told you HAD to have it when you leave. I can only assume they shoot you in some back alley if you lose it. While against all odds ( I lose keys on a weekly basis) I have kept that card and I was so proud when I handed it to the security guy. He did not seem properly impressed with me.
So tomorrow I’m off to do the Annapurna Circuit and hopefully not get eaten by a Yeti. I’m SO excited!