Dilly Dallying in Dali
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Dali, like Lijiang, has an old and new town. We stayed on the edge of the old town. While Dali was apparently one of the first destinations in China for western tourists, we enjoyed watching how fascinated the Chinese tourists were to see westerners. I guess it is one of those situations you have to experience to truly understand but.... Several Chinese tourists were so amazed that, as they walked past, they asked an American guy if they could have their photo with him!
The next day we headed to the lake. We knew it was 5km out of the old town but decided to walk rather than get a taxi or horse and cart. Aside from the sunburn, it's a good thing we did. The road to the river was lined with fields full of all sorts of crops, including rice of course. It was obviously harvest day too as everyone was in the field hoeing, picking or packing their produce - an amazing sight... Far more interesting than the reason for our walk in the first place: the lake.
We had a lovely two days walking around the old city and are now on our way to Emei. We caught a 5 hour bus from Dali to Kunming only to find that the only tickets left on the trains to Emei for the next 2 days were hard seats (it's a 16 hour train). With a big breath we purchased the hard seat tickets and said to each other... "at least we'll be making a memory."
However, about 20 minutes after the train pulled out of the station a conductor offered us a hard sleeper in mime. We practically threw him the fare difference and walked the length of the packed train with our packs and day packs in tow.
After watching 1/2 a movie it's time to lie down on what might just be the most comfortable bed since we left (my feet don't even reach the end!) and get some shut eye before we arrive in Emei to do some walking.