Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeeee can we take a Panda home?
Trip Start May 29, 2010
31Trip End Aug 30, 2010
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Miriam's bag did not appear out on the carousel!! Cindy into action and after about 20mins it was discovered that the bag never made it out of Xi'an as the tag came off! It was sent over on a later plane and Miriam and bag were reunited by bedtime!
As we were all a bit tired we decided to eat in the western style restaurant in the hotel and had probably the worst meal of the whole trip. The Chinese do not understand how to cook a steak and so it went back after the blood came dripping out of it!
Next morning it is off to see the Leshan Buddha. Lots of rain again this morning. We left the hotel at 8.30 and were back again by 9.00 when the driver informed us we needed our passports to get the tickets to see the Buddha!
More staring going on today - it does get a bit waring after a while!
Now we got there safe and sound but we are fairly sure that the driver fell asleep at one point and he was certainly very tired on the way back, mind you nothing surprises us anymore!
2 Hours later we arrived at the Buddha site. The surrounding area looks very third worldy with lots of broken down buildings etc. The Buddha himself is huge. We walked up to the top and looked down from his head to his feet. According to Wikipedia (I know it is not a quotable source!) he is 233 feet tall! Certainly worth the long drive to see him.
It seems that no matter where we go, the cities do not get any smaller. Chengdu is an 11 millioner! We went out for dinner to a hot pot restaurant which is a local speciality. Nothing like Lancashire Hotpot - this is a boiling pot of liquid and spices into which you put your raw meat or veg to cook and then eat it (all done at the table). Andrew did better than Gemma with the spicy stuff but we all had tingly lips by the end of it! Even Cindy the tour guide thought it was a bit on the spicy side!
Found a dough-nut shop on the way back to the hotel - pudding sorted
The following morning was a bit of a rush as both the alarms were set for the wrong time and we had to check out of the hotel early before going to the Panda Centre so, no breakfast for us!
Off to the Chengdu Panda Centre - Awwwwwww you cannot help but love them. Even though it was pouring with rain we saw loads of Pandas having breakfast, There was a definite Gemma Panda, lying there on her back with her food on her tummy just munching away without a care in the world! There were some cute baby ones as well as adults. We also saw red pandas too which are just a cute. (We will try and get some pics up soon but are having some problems getting them off the memory cards at the moment!) We bought some souvenirs - no prizes for guessing what!
Then it was off to Chengdu train station for the afternoon train to Chong Qing and then onto the Yangtze river trip. The train travels at 200k per hour and we had first class seats! No western toilets on the train so more squatting!
Arrived at the cruise (!!!!!) boat late afternoon. The beginning our our trip down the Yangtze!!