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Two bus crashes… not a great start to the morning

September 17, 2009 – Day 266 – Pokhara, Nepal

It is best not to make many (or any, in fact) future plans if you intend to travel by bus in Nepal. Actually, it is probably best not to really think of anything besides trying to survive and holding very tightly to the seat handle, if you are lucky enough to have one on your bus. Even on such a short journey of 6 hours can prove to be a life threatening endeavor.

Just another day in the life

Just another day in the life


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Welcome to Nepal!

September 13, 2009 – 262 – Kathmandu, Nepal

Not a great start to an already, universally bad kind of day: border crossing day. Our guide overslept by half an hour and our driver had hired a local taxi driver to take us down to the border because he didn’t want to. In the questionable taxi down the mountain that suffered from horn abuse, goat collision, and overheating brakes that were, thoughtfully no doubt, cooled by pouring rainwater collected from the road directly onto the brake pads.

Plays 5 musical notes at ear bursting levels

Plays 5 musical notes at ear bursting levels

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Excuse me, your miscellaneous chicken parts are on my backpack

September 6, 2009 – Day 255 – In transit China to Tibet

Very long, irritating train ride. Beautiful scenery, inconsiderate cabin mates (hard sleeper with 6 bunks; ours are bottoms this one and only time…ugh), looking forward to a real meal not consisting of almond crackers and oreos.

Saben on the train

Saben on the train

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Farewell China (and good riddance!)

September 3, 2009 – Day 252 – Chendgu, China

Overall an unusually cruel and terrible travel day on a Chinese train. Got to Sim’s and finally we were able to collapse into the confines of a quiet room with movies and showers and a real meal that was not ramen noodles.

September 4, 2009 – Day 253 – Chengdu, China

Lots of errands to run today in preparation of our approaching Tibet trip! Gathering supplies and meeting our 2 travel mates to-be. Seem like cool guys. Laundry day!

September 5, 2009 – Day 254 – Chengdu, China

Saben is sick with Lin’s yak flu (sorry!) and took the day off. Laundry got rained on during the night and now not only smells weird but completely refuses to dry. This evening at 7pm we set out for the train station to embark on a 3 day journey to Lhasa, Tibet. It took 3 security checks, photos of our passports, and a smokey waiting room until we were ready to board our mobile home. Good riddance China, Tibet here we come!

Bullet trains and Beijing duck

August 23-24, 2009 – Day 242-243 – Beijing, China

Yesterday was a boring day for posting. Only exciting thing to happen was that we discovered we had bought tickets for the soft sleeper bullet train to Beijing despite our numerous pleas for “hard sleeper.” Granted it was a really, really nice train and it got us to Beijing in only 10 speedy hours.

Ahh now thats more like it

Ahh now thats more like it

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Farewell charming Dali

August 3-4, 2009 – Day 221-222 – Chengdu, China

Had to leave lovely Dali this morning and head back to Kunming to catch an ongoing train for Chengdu. We are due to arrive in Chengdu tomorrow…

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Bad Day, Good Day

July 31, 2009 – Day 218 – Dali, China

Today, determined to get to the Stone Forest, we awoke even earlier (6AM!) and arrived at the minibus street to catch the morning “rush” to Shilin. We hoped for a cheaper fare (actually, the correct fare!) but today we were met by something even more frustrating: there were no buses would take us, no matter how much money we had!

Random Bug, because I can't find a photo that equates horrid frustration

Random Bug, because I can't find a photo that equates horrid frustration

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The Real Death Train

July 26-27, 2009 – Day 213-214 – Guilin, China

This was a very bad day because we had to leave today and forgot to book ahead of time for our night train to Kunming. The 18 hours it was scheduled to last turned into 25 hours due to a landslide in this rather unpleasant seasonal weather (humid, hot, rainy, and generally shitty summer).

Yeah...thats ramen soup

Yeah...thats ramen soup

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A World of Difference

July 20-21, 2009 – Day 207 – Shenzhen, China

Due to the impracticalities of crossing the border needlessly, we arrived in Shenzhen via metro to the train station (direct train to LuWu Station from Kowloon, very nice) to find that there are no open spots available on the train to Guilin for today.

In the station

In the station

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Our lucky day!

July 14, 2009 – Day 201 – Hong Kong

Whoa, talk about a great day! After a rather uncomfortable 12 hours in the Beijing airport, we were terribly eager to get on our flight to Hong Kong. To our great surprise, the airline made a mistake and overbooked our seats with another couple. To remedy the situation, we were bumped to first class! We were as giggly as two schoolgirls the entire flight!

Ahh... the easy life

Ahh... the easy life

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