20 Yaun Bills Y’all!!!

By Chris S., CE Adviser in China

I want to start this post with some of the new music that I have downloaded and listening to on my trip…

Miike Snow. He’s from Sweden

Laura Veirs. Very relaxing voice

Crystal Castles. I accidently double clicked buy on I-tunes, and after listening to it a few time I really like it.

Ratatat. Their latest release

Stornoway. A few guys that went to Oxford in England… Very talented!

World Cup time! We went to Lucy’s last night and watched all three games. Argentina probably played the best. US tied with England, which is absolutely amazing! Brit Chris was not happy at all! When we scored he stormed off to the bathroom. In all fairness the ball should not have gone in. Those Brits take their ‘football’ very seriously. It was a lot of fun watching the games, but we had to stay up until 5 in the morning. Today I am extremely tired…

Between games Chris and I walked around and I took some pictures of him. I have wanted to take night portraits so I can practice using my flash. Besides getting harassed by multiple tuck tuck drivers soliciting us for ‘women company,’ it went well. I think I got some good stuff, but we will see.

Today, we all slept in until around 11 because of the late night. After a quick brunch, we went to Xingping and took a bamboo raft ride. It was a lot of fun and the clouds complied and nestled into the hills very nicely. I will let the pictures speak for the boat ride. Basically, we rode out to this island then road back. On the way we saw the scene that is on the back of the 20 Yuan bills.

When we got to the island there were many people waiting to sell us random crap and food. All of the food was out of the river, so I figured I would give it a try. First, I had deep fried shrimp that was good, but I just ate the whole thing, head and all… Apparently, I was supposed to take the head off. Next was baby crabs. They were very crunchy and nothing like the delicious Dungeness from home in Washington. After that I went for the shrimp cakes. They were good too. Finally was fried fish. These really didn’t have much of a flavor. It was like chewing on scales and fish bones, delightful!

Along with the local river food, there were cormorant birds, which fisherman train to hunt fish for them. The one thing that took me by surprise was the massive snake with a shirtless man dancing around with it wrapped around him.

After the island we just rode back in the boat and it was pretty bumpy, but we survived.

On the way home we caught a bus and it was packed like sardines. I sat on a bucket. Right before we left an old man sat next to me. He said something and everyone started to laugh. We had about a 20 minute conversation. He would tell me something and I would say dui, which means okay (not sure on that spelling). People around us thought it was hilarious that we were just going back and forth. They had no idea what I was saying, especially the old man. I ended up giving him a yellow Livestrong bracelet and he gave me a big rotted tooth smile. He was pretty happy about that. It is funny because the Chinese people that I have met really don’t accept gifts very easily, but this old man just grabbed it up and put it on. I was pretty happy about the whole thing. He invited us to his house to have some bijou, which would have been great, but we had to pass unfortunately. Now we’re back and I’m exhausted!

The picture is a little blurry, but this is the old man.. Sweet guy

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