China still cool!

After 12 or so hours from Vancouver to Shanghai, I jumped on a domestic flight up to Xi’an to start this epic journey of mistranslations and mystery foods.

Day 1 got off to an interesting start, when I jumped in a cab armed with directions to my hostel only to find out the driver had no idea where I wanted to go because the address was in an english translation of what locals only understand in Chinese characters. After googling some more information I found an address in Chinese that the driver was confident he could get me to. Getting there in one piece was another story altogether; driving at speeds of up to 140 km/h while on the phone, darting in and out of lanes weaving traffic, and funnily enough the closest we came to an accident was driving down a back street at 5km/h whilst lost trying to look for the hostel.

Since this is the first of many* blogs to come from the next 2 months of travel I should probably introduce the main characters in the story. First up there is the handsome protagonist:

Then there is the couple:

The little one is Anna, she's our interpreter. The tall one is Damien, and he is pretty cool.

Last up is our quasi-american hombre, Dave Jasek:

...but he hasn't even joined the trip yet, so forget about him for the moment.

After a good night’s rest we spent the next day taking in the sights of the city, namely the city wall which Damien tells me is the largest in the world. I don’t really know, but I’m going to run with that. It’s about 13 or so kms around, and we rode all the way around that sucka.

The Bell Tower in the center of the city

Later in the day we went to visit the Wild Goose Pagoda with a massive water fountain out the front. Anna tried to wade through it, until a guard angrily kept blowing his whistle at her… he didn’t seem too impressed. Nice area to visit anyways.

Also for no reason at all, here’s Anna and I with the Eiffel Tower:

*maybe

Written on May 2, 2011