Day 52 11am I head out to the Petrol station again… 3 hours of nothing. I threw the towel in… the same people gawking at me, the same questions in broken English – ” What doing”… my response- Hands up in the air pulling a non-plussed face, I could not bear the same stream of […]
I head out to the Petrol station again... 3 hours of nothing. I threw the towel in... the same people gawking at me, the same questions in broken English - " What doing"... my response- Hands up in the air pulling a non-plussed face, I could not bear the same stream of 2hr mind bending conversations, lack of movement and another expensive night at that Hotel No more!. I hailed a taxi to go get myself a night bus out of Cheng Du.
I arrive to an Ocean of heads and bags bursting out of the Bus and Train Stations, spilling out onto a massive square surrounded by Chinese fast food outlets. The mere sight of this almost made me tell taxi guy to turn around. I play match up the Chinese symbols amidst booth's on booth's and massive 'Matrix' like screens flitting different symbols every 30 seconds. I match my four symbols and wait 2 hrs to be told No bus or trains today. A lovely girl spotted the forlorn white man turning away from the booth dejected, her name translated was 'Really'.... "Really' was great and her English was OK... I was starving for company and food and could only trust a local to choose food for me, otherwise it was another rank KFC... she rebuffed me. I bit the bullet and bought a Night Train for the following day, stashed my bag in the lock up and ate the rank KFC. I went on a far off wander- minus the bags, hell bent on finding cheap lodgings...Hallelujah! I find a place for 100 yuan, not that bad either. Lugged the bags forth and boiled the kettle to eat my complimentary Chinese Pot noodle in the room.
MY Chinese phone only allows me to communicate with 2 people...Michelle in Vietnam and Adam in Bangkok...their is no chance of Skype and I can't even use the internet.
Adams text: " are you halfway through a Sunday roast with Yorkshire puddings and several ales, and eagerly anticipating the Wimbledon's men's final with Murray and Federer in 20 mins Grady? because I flipping well am"
Adams kind words were enough to get me motivated.
I would move Hell on Earth to watch this, I don't care weather Murray is Scottish or English, someone born just up the road from where I jumped on the mortal coil was in the Wimbledon final...I will not miss it! I texted 'Really' and despite her not liking my chances I eventually get the name of the swankiest Hotel in town... I was off to the ' Shang Ri La'. I hailed a taxi...'this city is Massive!'
I share a good bit of under hand banter with a some Irish pals back in Blighty, I thought that the jungle that is 'Laos' would be the first place in the world I would not see an Irish Bar...but no! I saw it from the cockpit of 'Trevors' juggernaut, a bamboo bar and 3 breakfast stools selling Guiness with those 3 colours in the flag.
I had high hopes of avoiding them in China...however I was never more pleased...tucked away in the back of the 'Shang Ri La' was 'Mooneys' bar...their was an Irish cover band blasting out modern day pop classics to a crowd of 3, me included. I kept the staff up till 3 watching Murray give his all.