7th month: just in China!
That's it, it's been a month that we are in China and 7 months of travel in any. Quick return on this last month...
We drove on Chinese roads only, and more specifically in the Yunnan and the Sichuan : Hekkou - Yuanyang - Jianshui - Kunming - Dali - Lijiang - Tiger leaping Gorge - Shangrila - Benzilan - Xiangcheng and bus to Kangding, Leshan.
In a large half of the month, we drove with another couple of cyclos french: patches released. What a pleasure to share this adventure with other riders who look like us!
In total, we are at 9037kms either 1347 kms by bike this month. Very correct since a good party was in the mountains!
Most of the time, the State of the roads is good: very correct bitumen and not too steep slopes. But sometimes, without warning, there are fifty horrible meters, the well stony track... Good, the only really rotten portion long, it has taken her... by bus!
We found the pleasure of eat varied way, the pleasure of discovering new ingredients. It is often bathed in fat (but it's okay!), it is spicy stack properly (a bit more spicy Sichuan). And everything is miles away from what we eat in Chinese restaurants here!
We were taken in picture dozens and dozens of times. Sometimes just us, sometimes with people. And sometimes even without our bikes!
We discovered an Asian country which has nothing to do with the 4 other visited before. And it feels good! One tired a little bit of South - East Asia, there was a need for change.
Our dear bikes have well bossé, maintenance continues.
Jianshui, we have changed our strings, after only 3000kms... And then to Kunming, Thomas realized that the problem was also his trays and sprockets wear: here is all new. Mine, should change them in the coming month. Thanks to Hui Li, Chinese warmshower and the store managerhis home and his help! It's nice to be able to explain the technical problems in a bike in China shop because most do not speak a word of English!
On the side of Thomas, his luggage is at the end of life, two welds dropped... Will have to deal with change.
From my side, change a room air that had a leak on the inflation valve (first change of room air at the end of 8600 kms). And breaking of the speed cable: inside the mechanism on the handlebars, he gave us some concern but could repair!
What we liked here:
- The reception of the people, fantastic. When they see us, and especially if one leaves a small"NI hao"(Chinese) or"tachidele"(in Tibetan), they are surprised and make us big smiles." We were sometimes offered food, some fruit to full meals, and often by the most modest people! As a foreigner, we are very well seen and it's just weird, because people have to have a certain pride in being there with us.
- The landscapes of Yunnan and Sichuan so beautiful. With on top of one traditional culture very present: women in traditional clothes everywhere. In Yunnan, it enjoyed an impressive variety of hats; the small cap "gavroche" in a huge square flat.
In Sichuan, formerly Tibetan, we liked the face typed some people; women in great dresses, their multitude of jewelry and their long braid wrapped around the skull; men and their long coats in wool of yaks.
- The ease of planting the tent : in nature, or in the villages (Cf Spots lower dodos).
- And as a bonus... A little gem that makes us laugh: very often when we discuss and that we don't understand, the Chinese will write and show us! This situation happened just a few times in other countries, but here it is recurring. They have to understand that it does not read ideograms.
What we like less:
- The difficulty of communication : it is often frustrating to meet people, and not be able to understand their questions and easily put our own. To communicate, we used a dialogues of the Lonely Planet guide, a dictionary on Smartphone)Hypostomus), and our faithful G' palémo
- Queues (administrations, stations... and even traffic jams): some are not embarrassed to go to, or find all means to be the first to go. Is this the policy of single child who is that they do not support waiting for? The mass of people in which they were drowned in this country of more than 1.3 billion people that they should play the elbows do not get crushed or feel exist? In any case, we are happy to be cyclists: it is not too often faced with this problem...
- The klaxons : it had already begun to the Viet Nam, it was accustomed. In China, more than half of the people honk just to prevent that they will exceed; It is also sometimes used to say "push yourself" (trucks in general). The concern is that the sound level of the horns is higher here; It made us jump more than once.
- The difficulties of the mountains : but gentle slopes rising on dozens of kilometres. That tired body and nerves. In short, it has pushed our boundaries and it has learned to endure more, day after day! It is positive in the end but it is not done alone!
What was lost
Bon, on n’arrivera pas à faire un mois sans perdre des choses ! Pas facile la vie de nomades ! 🙂
Thomas has lost a Boxer (who knows where), and a t-shirt (in merino Decathlon, sniff...) probably forgot in a hotel...
At the edges of rivers, on the edge of a Lake, on a basketball court or in front of hangars... This is not too hard to find where to place the tent! As long as the site does not belong to an individual, people is in laugh a little.
In the cities, it had to go in hotels. Their concern: no heating in the rooms, just a blanket. Hard to get out of bed!
For we see or meet again in pictures:
Here we are in the season 3 of your favorite series: