Post # 103 Xiaoji
Day 117 614 days to go. Distance: today 110km total 7307km.
Its 7.15pm Monday 26/3/2012 Xiaoji. As it runs out that truck debacle last night was road works and the traffic heading in/out of Zhengzhou not coping well with the delays. When I left this morning amongst the mass of massive transports was this little Chinese police man trying to traffic control the situation. If there’s any police back home reading this post you would never grizzle again about traffic control if you saw this poor bugga. Oh my.
Thank goodness that’s a past life for me at least but my heart went out to him albeit in passing. Rube and I manoeuvred our way out very creatively and were soon under way for the day. Theres heaps of roadworks going on but the quality of road when done is awesome!! We had some great sections today amongst the ‘still in progress’ dodgy bits. The main roads equivalent here is very busy that’s for sure. It still surprises me how many road workers are women. They are easily half and work alongside the fellas doing the labour. What also stands out is that the women are everyday looking and not hefty or manly.
At the end of the day work is work and means pay doesn’t it? The moped men navigated us in and out of Zhenghou. We didn’t have to go through the CBD which was great. So with lots of awesome help from the lads we just had to find our way through the network of ring roads. Outside of Zhenghou we crossed the ‘Zhenghou Yellow River Highway Bridge.’ It was 5km long and a big deal bridge with the best views. The yellow river is so named from the silt colouration. It meanders through silt flats and was about 3km wide where the bridge crossed.
The river banks are a green expanse of cultivated land and the contrast in colours from the yellow, green and blue sky was beautiful. I caused a bit of honking chaos but too bad, I had to stop for pickies 🙂 Once out of the metro sprawl we stopped for lunch by a lake. It turned out to be a fish farm and I amused myself lizarding on a rock in the sun watching fish jump. It was so nice Rube had to give me some loving kickstands to get going again. After the kms were done for the day we found a hotel at a service station centre along the 107. It is overpriced for what you don’t get but very convenient so we’re happy enough that it works.
Ive just closed the door to the bathroom and using the communal loo. A shower will have to wait to tomorrow its way to icky in there. Theres a mould farm on food left in one of the cupboards but the linen is clean and Ive aired the room so alls good. I’m getting better recognising Chinese characters on the 5road signs. The rick for me is to make up my own pictures in the characters. So we have been following the….’hat for dancing’ ‘fort under fire’ ‘jail for prisoners’ ‘a king and his castle’. Today we followed house by the sea, what can I say I’m a visual sort of a girl. Yesterday I emailed Giong Long to say hi and send him the photos from us at his favourite eatery.
I didn’t tell you about the food he treated me to so seeing I’m hungry talking food seems like a great way to finish up. Theres a Chinese vegetable like a bulb that grows in the ground under water. He couldn’t tell me its name in Pinyin. It has a pinkish flesh and was baked and served in a broth. It had a sweat potato texture and sort of taste but was quite unique and very yum. There were egg noodles cooked in peanut oil and served with a dressing of soy sauce, dark sweat vinegar, garlic, ginger and chili. Oh dear very yum. There were steamed and pan fried wan tons filled with Asian greens and nuts, total delish. Also steamed pork dumplings out of this world even for a vego. Desert was a baked tofu custard with nuts, beans, a sweet vegetable and dark jelly. I think this was my fav. No surprises there for the sweet tooth. What a treat and on that note its time for dinner. Talk soon
PS Theres a yellow crescent moon tonight with the stars out and fireworks from Xinxiang, a city 10km west of the highway. Not a bad view from the window. I may yet spot that falling star Evan!!
PPS I had a special comment that maybe a poem could be found from the afternoon of spoiling in Wuhan by Giong Long. I think you’re right Linda