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So Long Lijiang

I awoke abruptly, torn from strange dreams of past travels, to find myself quite unexpectedly in a beautiful hotel room in Lijiang China. Scott was knocking on my door. Jie was to leave us this morning, and it was with a heavy heart that I pulled on my pants and exited the hotel. We went to a touristy restaurant which served us fried eggs and oatmeal. We talked about our families, and sipped Yunnan locally grown coffee, and all too soon it was time for us to say goodbye to Jie. This we did, and as her cab drove away Scott and I walked back to the hotel, excited about delving into china without the crutch of a fluent local, but also sad to leave behind the pleasant company and great deals on hotels.

Water Town Hotel GTD.JPG

The rest of the morning was spent by myself furiously working on correspondence, as Scott struggled to finish his capital markets online tutorial. An hour before we had to leave, Scott and I set off for the final stroll. We sipped yak yogurt as we climbed once more to the top of the old city, to pay our 2 RMB for a look out over the vast network of cobbled streets and arching tile.

Lijiang Ancient City Rooftops.JPG

We thanked the most gracious and helpful staff of the hotel one last time before heaving our things into the back of a cab. Let me pause here to mention Chinese cabs in general. They kick the pants off all other cabs. Hands down. Most of them are French or German vehicles, with comfortable back seats, and vast trunks. Each time we get a driver he is aesthetically pleasing (something like a cross between Genghis Khan and Hunter S. Thompson), not only willing, but generally delighted by our inability to communicate, and provides cheap, but metered transportation, eliminating the need to bargain/be taken advantage of that we dealt with so often in India. In short, it is a joy to travel by cab in China.

The cab dropped us off at a local hotel, where buses leave every 10 minutes for the airport. We climbed on the 50 passenger bus, along with 5 other people and sat at the most rear extremity. We opened the laptop and cruised through the lush and dramatic Yunnan countryside, listening to Biggie Smalls and the Wu Tang Clan.

Scott Busts a Move At the Airport.JPG

The Lijiang Airport was small, but efficient. We sat in the lobby, and played whist. Scott bought a bag of mysterious nuts that looked like something in between a peanut and a pistachio, but proved much tougher and less tasty than both. Something like eating raw beans. Needless to say we landed in Chengdu starving.


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