Zhenyuan

Spent the weekend in 镇远, what a co-worker called the Venice of China. I mean, it has gondolas, and a river, and bridges… but, there were no Italians. Although, that would’ve been cool.

I will say this; it was really pretty at night. And the people smiled at me, more than any place I’ve been in China so far.

The pictures don’t do it justice… but, you know, they give you an idea.

What I really enjoyed was meeting, hands down, the coolest Chinese person I’ve met so far; a 24-year old hostel proprieter who had traveled and played decent guitar, and had a similar attitude about life:

That it’s best experienced raw.

I never would’ve gone there if it weren’t for a Ukranian actress who used to work in Chinese TV and films, now teaching English. By chance, she celebrated her birthday in Kaili, and invited me out to see her place in Zhenyuan.

 

And I’m glad I did. Her place, much nicer than mine, ended up being in a neat little corner of China. The three of us ended up having a ridiculous night drinking at his hostel and talking about the finer points of international travel and misadventures.

My last day there, we had delicious 鸳鸯锅 (yuānyangguō) or “Affectionate Couple Pot” (my translation; they’re not banging… at least I didn’t see them bang). Even though it looks like “Yinyang” symbol, the 汉字 for yin yang (阴阳, Traditional: 陰陽) is much different.

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