We’re going to a party. It’s a birthday party…

Crossposting a few old pieces from an ancient blogger account.

Original post here: https://raleighc.blogspot.com/2008/05/were-going-to-party-its-birthday-party.html

I made it to China! go me. woot.

So I don’t have a whole lot to talk about yet. I did get on a plane. yes, it was a long flight. no, the food was awful. My seat was all the way in back and was in the middle. The plane flew over some of Alaska/Russia and I did get up to look at the mountains which were all snowy and cold looking. The flight was 12 and half hours of which I slept about fourty five minutes. I mostly read a novel I picked up at the airport by the author of “Thank you for Smoking” and I watched most of the movie Jumper which mostly blew. The novel is called Boomsday and I highly recommend it so far.
Eventually we landed in China! Masterful landing by the pilot too. never felt us touch the ground. Anyway, the really crappy part about riding in the back of the plane and flying internationally is that you’re the last one to the immigration counter where you have to get your visa/passport checked for about the 3rd time. So that was about 25 – 30 minutes just standing, which wasn’t the worst on second thought, after sitting on the plane so long.
So after I finished at the immigration counter, I walk down some stairs that point to the baggage claim, but theres no baggage. just clearly marked signs that say there’s a railcar that goes to the baggage claim every 3 minutes. the sign said “Relax.” Also there was a nice bit of engrish on the escalator that said “Watch out for step of oldster and young.”
So I get my bag and I’m outta there and I walk to the road where theres about 100 taxis at any given moment. Theres what appears to be a queue which i shortly wait in and line up for before the nice pilot behind tells me in an australian accent that you just go out and get one. Pretty pointless having at the queue if he doesn’t do anything, if you ask me. So I get a taxi and we’re not off to the smoothest start. I had the address translated from English to Chinese by the girl sitting next to me on the plane, but the driver still has to talk to other drivers and seems to know where I’m going by the end of their little conversation. Well we ended up getting pretty close, but we went to Xibahe Baili instead of Xibahe Xili. Minor detour and we’re there. Check in was pretty much a breeze. They needed my passport which seemed really weird though.
I was pretty starving after check out and took a walk up Xibahe which is the road the hotel is on. Language barriers abound as I floundered in mime to finally get a pot of tea (Delicious jasmine). I was really hungry though. Of course I had to pick a restaurant without a picture menu. after the 3rd cup of though it occured to me there were signs on the wall which I could point to. unfortunately they didn’t really help that much. Luckily, with the help of a woman who overheard my dilema and spoke a little english I was able to get some dumplings!

mmm. very tired. write more laters.

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