Chengdu

Trip Start Mar 11, 2010
1
6
35
Trip End May 01, 2010


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Where I stayed
Hollys Hostel

Flag of China  , Sichuan,
Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Im in Chengdu, at Hollys hostel and will be here for 3 days at least. Im going to see the Panda's tomorrow.
Chengdu, another.. 5th biggest city in China, home to over 14 mil people and the place where the first paper money in the world was issued about 700 years ago. Between Shenzen, where I started, and here that would be the total population of Australia in 2 cities. Chengdu is the capitol of Sichuan, home of spicy hot food, and the biggest Panda breeding center in the world.
Im staying at Hollys hostel in the Tibetan area of town. Dunno why but I keep getting drawn to Tibet.I cant say enough good stuff about Hollys, you get free net..when you can, the girls at reception are brilliant and they have HOT water. Im sick of luke warm..ish showers.
Across the road is Nanjiao park which is pretty fomous around here so I went to check it out yesterday. I thought it was pretty crap and couldnt understand what all the fuss was about. I came back here and caught up on emails in a marathon session and had a shower. I went out again later for a walk and look see to see if I could find something for dinner cos I was hungry. I walked past the entry to the park and thought I would go to another entry cos that is where you usually find the food stalls. Well I found this really cool place called Jinli Gujie, a "new old" town built in the park. It is built as an exact replica of an old village and is cramed full of food stalls and bars and souvineers. I later found out the street full of food stalls is called snack street funnily enough. It is great cos you can see everything before you buy it and anything on a stick is there. I think I ate a rodent. i couldnt understand what she said it was so I tried it anyway. All the chinese were staring at me so it was something dodgy. I didnt think much of it, it was too well done for my taste. I like my rodent really rare. It was really crunchy and not a lot of flavour, tinda like pork crackle without the flovour. After all that excitement I went home to bed cos I had to wash some smalls and get up early to go to the panda's tomorrow.
I booked a tour to the panda's cos the local bus is too late for feeding time. I booked through the hostel and it was really cheap. The english speaking guide said "hello" and technically speaking that is english but I expected a few more words and maybe some comentary. He was late to pick me up. I had to listen to his crap music blaring in the car. We almost ran around the panda centre, and then he wanted to leave early. I was having none of that and made him walk around again. The place is huge and built on a hill, every direction seems to be up hill, in the suburbs. Other than that I cant tell you much except I had fun and would highly recomend the place just maybe not the tour. The tour was still cheaper than taking a taxi there and bus back so was still worth it.


Aprille have a nice birthday tomorrow. Im in China and you are a whole year older....go figure.
I will have a drink for you tomorrow down snack street and I might even get them to chuck another rodent on the BBQ for you.

I went to Snack street for dinner cos I wanted to get some pics at night. The place was packed so I couldnt get any. The big city's in China are everything you expect. Big screens, flashing lights and neon signs everywhere. They are also everything you dont expect and that is tree lined streets, which makes it hard to get good pics. I went to Jinli Gujie this morning and got some pics before everyone arrived, its not quite the same but will give you some idea.
Dinner last night was 5 small pastie looking things with green vegies in them and 2 sticks with buff tendon, they like it up here. i thought it was as tough as old boot leather and way too spicey for me. i had ice cream and fruit salad to stop my mouth from burning. Breakfast this moorning was batter (crepe style) egg spread out over it, throw on some spring onion and some brown stuff, fold in half add some brown paste, hold the hot sauce, add a wafer thing and it was beautiful. Add 600ml orange juice and it cost me $1. The thing is I have no idea what I am eating most times cos I dont speak the language so it is a matter of trying to get it not too spicey.
I got the pics I wanted this morning then set off on a marathon trek. I went to Tianfu Square, right in the middle of Chengdu. From there I was looking for the flower and bird market cos I wanted to see the birds. I wont bore you with the details but they are not there anymore. I wasnt lost. I thought I was but I went back to the start and tried again and still not there. While I was searching nature called, if you know what I mean, and it took me about an hour to find a dunny. Thank goodness for Maccas. After that I saw signs, IN ENGLISH, everywhere for restrooms.While I was looking around I bought some sox. I got 5 pair for $1.60. Couldnt get him to 6 pair. Im going back tomorrow to get another 5 pair then I can wear them for 4 days and chuck them out. No more washing for me. While I was at it my feet are stinky so I was looking for some powder. Any sort of powder but they dont seem to sell any here but I managed to convince the chemist I needed something when I took off my shoe.
Another thing strikes me as funny. Everywhere in Asia and South America there are thousands of tourist T shirts for sale and usually made in China. Wekk here there are NONE. I have not seen any in a week since I have been here.
Any way back to my walk. The bird market wasnt there but there was a couple of parks I wanted to check out. They were amazing. I stumbled on Quingtai street, that was amazing The Bonsai garden at Baihuatan park was amazing. Stuff this just look at the pics they are AMAZING.

I just bought king browns at the WOWO (deli) down the road for 50cents, the same price as orange juice.  Ciggies cost $1.00 a pack.

Im on the night train tonight from Chengdu to Xian. It leaves about 9.30 and arrive at about noon tomorrow.
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Comments

Ngaere on

I Hollys as good as the picture of the last hotel?

daz on

hi John looks like your having an awsome time, the photo's are great. Shaz wants a panda!!! thanks MATE.... Ps i'll talk to neil about sending an overnight or international bag to you LOL..

flurr on

you got some good pics there, looks really tranquil :)
and the pandas!!!... THEY ARE SOOOO CUTE!! bet chris will say 'yeah but you didn't hold one' ... hahaha....
xxx love ash and laura xxx

dzasta on

Hey Daz
I hope work still sux cos Id hate for it to change while I am away

chriiis on

haha oh didnt you get to hold the bears? maybe only the elite get to like me :D, hows that ash? sounds like your trip is awesome hope your having funnn.

dzasta on

Im having heaps of fun. I coulda held a baby panda but it would have cost 1000Y or about $165. I got better stuff to spend my money on.

dantheuteman
dantheuteman on

Hey John, I got a few mice in my shed, so you are welcome to catch them and cook 'em up.

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