Your true traveller finds boredom rather agreeable than painful.
It is the symbol of his liberty - his excessive freedom.
He accepts his boredom, when it comes, not merely philosophically,
but almost with pleasure.

Aldous Huxley

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Travelling Diary... Day One.

The shadow of communism is still strong in the country side...

The itinerary is doomed! Yesterday, when I finally arrived at the bus station with my bicycle, it took me half an hour to understand that I couldn't bring the damn bike to Shacheng... So I went to Datong instead, which is in the north of Shanxi province. Then, a couple of meters after getting down of the bus and on the bike, I broke the damn chain (so an average of 90 minutes using the bike after taking it from the store...). So I had to walk the the hotel on the other side of the damn city. At lrast this morning I got the stuff repaired for 1 yuan... Chinese know the trick. And then I biked.
First I had to make my way between trucks and factories, and a couple of coal power plants. Slightly dusty. Then, 3 hours and 45km later, I realized my hands were shaking. Of course, I had forgotten to eat since the day before, before taking the damn bus. So I ate. Eggs and tomato tasting fish. Nice. At that point I was exhausted as a bat, dusty like a desert rat, and already sunburn like a toad. Damn. Then I thought: what the f#$k am I doing here? Bike trips are hell. But after a long break, I got back on the bike (the chain is still in one piece) and continued. But I had not seen that there was a mini pass to go throught... So I started to climb, and after 500 meters I was already on the point of giving up. Tada! Then, unespectedly as a unicorn having a shower in downtown Montreal, a truck tried to pass me, but couldn't, because it was going at maybe 10 or 15km/h... So I let it pass and grabbed the back... and I climbed the whole damn pass thanks to this truck! My arm was starting to shake long before the top but I managed, and it was so cool to not have to paddle! And then it when down, for some km, and it was fantastic.
But then I saw that there was still 50km left, at least, before reaching Yinxian, where one of the oldest wooden building on earth stands: a 68m high damn pagoda. Impressive hein? Bon.
And I got totally exhausted (second time in one day), so I managed to get a lift for some km in the back of a truck machine, with the damn bike. So I still did close to 100km in a day, and that's way beyond my capacity, as I just realised. My arse hurts more that a wooden pagoda, and my legs... So now I go to sleep. Tomorrow I'll try to reach Wutai Shan.

Something quite funny: facebook has been closed down by the Chinese government, but I now have access to my blog! And people are blowing up fireworks in the middle of the street right in front of the internet cafe.

Being in the mini truck with my bike...


SillySabrina said...

You are so definitely the coolest boyfriend a girl could ever have.

Although I'm a bit critical of that hanging-behind-the-truck-on-your-bike. You know what I thing about the Chinese traffic.