Trip Start Sep 14, 2006
169Trip End ??? ??, 2007
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We got dressed and headed down to our free-of-charge breakfast at 8.30am. Jason was already outside and we remembered that we had only half heartedly refused him as he dropped us off at the hotel yesterday. He told us where we should take breakfast - actually a restaurant next door and said he would wait for us. The restaurant was offering a buffet selection of unappetizing slop so after handing over our vouchers we left without eating or drinking anything. Jason was laughing and pointed us next door to another restaurant which turned out to be closed. We crossed the road and headed into an American type restaurant with American Cappucino or something on the sign outside.
What we went through next was hilarious
Outside Jason was waiting faithfully and I still had to break the news to him that I needed at least another half hour at the PSB to get my visa extension
The PSB visa visit went smoothly (despite the pretty police girl not being anywhere to be seen) and I now have another month in China should I need it. Back at the hotel Jason, Steve and I set off for our walking tour a full three hours later than Jason would have hoped. First stop was a Taoist temple, followed by a walk up a vegetable market to a nearby lake and mansion and then to the Guild Hall. The Guild Hall was built around 700 years ago to act as a meeting place between the Hall's out of town owners and local business men. It was a place of hospitality so there is an opera stage, and grand rooms for eating and drinking. It's full of symbolism usually pointing to prosperity and fertility (of men, not crops).
I felt the city opening up finally and beginning to think that maybe the girls had left too soon
Next we went to the Imperial Street and two large lakes. Jason explained one the two lakes was associated with the Yang family - a family revered in China for its heroism and fairness in governance. The other lake was associated with another family who were the opposite. The head of the family was responsible for murdering the Yang leader. As a result that lake is now dirty and no people swim in it, the Yang lake however is clean and has bathers in most days including today.
Lastly we went to the Yang family mansion, and learnt more about this famous Chinese family
As we walked it was funny how many other rickshaw drivers were saying hello to Jason, all no doubt jealous of his good grasp of English and the extra trade he must get because of it. Jason keeps a small notebook with some of his previous 248 customers testimonials in. Steve and I were happy to add our own to the pages. Jason had the three of us photographed and took my cameras memory card to a nearby Kodak place. He stuck the photo in and we wrote our recommendations!
This and other blog sites only has a few entries on Kaifeng, and I read them all before arriving so if anyone does the same and wants a good honest tour around Kaifeng, Jason can be found most mornings outside the Dajintai Hotel.