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Citation du moment
« Il n'y a pas de bonnes habitudes. L'habitude, c'est une façon de mourir sur place. »
Albert Quentin - Un singe en hiver

Firsts steps in China

6 Feb 2014 | Kunming, Yunnan, China

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Lao being not so different from Thailand (simular culture, language, people...), and being still very hot, I decide I'll go directly to China! A couple of scooters later I'm done with the 60km left to the border (I'm not sure the second guy who took me for most of the way had any plan to go there...).
Walking accross is easy, and welcome to China!

I start hitchhiking toward Jinghong, the first city of importance on my way. I'm soon taken by Xiao Mei and her family, they came to do some shopping and also wanted to go to Lao but were turned down at the border. To make the most of their Spring holidays, they decide to go around a bit before going back to Kunming. They are all super nice, even if communication is a bit hard -Xiao Mei being the only one who speak a little of English- they make me fill comfortable and I enjoy their company. The food is plentiful in the car and they also take me to my first Chinese restaurant, after a few days of not eating much in Lao, I'm quickly overfull :)

Once in Jinghong they offer me to stay with them in their hotel room, and restaurant again and pub... So nice for my first impression of Chinese people! The following day they are going to Pu'er, no idea what's there but I happily join. Turns out there is nothing, it's famous for the tea but that's it, so we continue to Mojiang, they have a friend living there.
Mojiang is famous for being on the Tropic of Cancef line, they have a park in the city for that one, and also made one for the Sun and one for the Moon. After visiting a bit around and eating a few times again (I can't eat anymore, too much food!), they go to their friend's place while I find a place to spend the night, we will met again tomorrow.
All the hotels on the city are full (especially the cheap ones) as it is holidays and that area of China is where the warm weather is, so as I decide I will just sleep sonewhere outside, a granny takes me to a place -which I still don't really know whether it's an hotel or not- and indicates me I can sleep on the couch in the common room, perfect!

The following day I meet Xiao Mei and family again, today they will go to the mother of her sister's husband (which is not actually her sister but cousin, the one-child-policy of China kinda screw up the whole thing), so they will take me to the next city, Yuxi, from where I can make my way to Kunming, the capital of Yunnan.
I'm a bit sad to leave them, but that's how it goes, and I'm soon taken by a family from Chongqing, in several cars, going to Kunming.
I find myself in the car with all the children (well it's more that all the children jump in the car with me haha) and they all learn english at school so it's very funny to communicate with them and gives me a couple of hours of Chinese lessons (my head hurts afterward...).

Once in Kunming, it's again a granny who find me an hotel, when I make her understand it's too expensive, she would scout all the area to find something I can afford. Checking in is also a sport in itself, when they have a foreigner they have to fill additionnal forms -if they are allowed to take foreigners at all-, and even with my passport in hand no one seems to be able to find the information they need, like name, address, country...

Looks like I will have to make great efforts in learning basics of Chinese very quickly!

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