Dusty streets beneath red lanterns

Neehow! (That’s hello in Mandarin)
Quick update from China. We somehow Forest-Gumped our way out of Beijing amidst the thousands of other travelers in route to their hometowns for the Chinese New Year and have landed 12 hours south in a town called Pingyao. It’s one of the last oldest towns in China still clinging to it’s walled city, dusty streets, and hanging red lanterns. Cars are not allowed in the city so everyone is riding dusty, rickety old bicycles. Men covered in black pull mules carrying coal to heat the old homes. Have you ever seen a movie about centuries-old China? That’s what it looks like here. Amazing. I can’t wait to show you the pictures. I’m still working on how not to intrude on the locals’ lives as I snap away on my camera that costs more than every belonging they have or have ever had. I’m taking a lot of low angle shots so I do not hold the camera up to my face.
The people are very friendly. We are staying in a charming guest house that sometimes smells unfortunately like the sewage drains outside. But it’s the real China we are seeing. Raw and real.
There are a lot of other backpackers in our guesthouse, including a pack from France. I am delighted to hear my favorite language in the middle of nowhwere China.
The food is amazing. We have been eating pancakes for breakfast at the guesthouse and then eat Chinese throughout the day. They love their noodles and beef and bean curd and eggplant. We love it too.
We thought we might get stuck here as there are no train tickets back to Beijing until Sunday, a day after our flight home. Note to anyone who wants to come to China–never come in winter. And never, ever, I repeat EVER, come during the Chinese New Year.
But our guest house owner booked us a cheap flight back to Beijing tomorrow so all is well.
We will blog again when we get a chance!!! But now we’re headed out in the freezing temps with our fifteen layers of clothing (not kidding) to explore the city some more.

2 Comments

  1. Jessica says:

    So they don’t have cars but they have Internet access?

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  2. Emily says:

    The word “raw” — I don’t like it so much. 🙂

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