||[Jan. 22nd, 2009|09:36 pm]
I've decided to go to Austin this spring to visit my friend Kaleb! I do need to get out of town for a bit and he offered. Warm weather in winter would be a good thing for me.
Also, he's sending up a picture of me from when he visited me in China over Chinese new year that I've wanted for a long time. It is a picture of me, in Kaleb's words, at my most despairing. We had just spent the previous evening with a Hmong family at the top of this beautiful rice terrace just outside of Longsheng in the middle of winter. The house was unheated and I had the flu. That didn't stop me from partaking in the home-brew moonshine and partying late. Trying to sleep that night was one of the most awful experiences of my life. I've never shivered more while covered in many blankets and a North Face jacket. The following morning we went down the hill to catch the bus back to town. The road back to town ran along a dirt road on a cliff side. As it was feb. in Guangxi it was raining...think mud. We got on the bus and after a mile or so I knew that the douchebag driving had very little idea how to pilot a mini-bus. He was driving way to fast. I chimed in with "man yidiar" (basically slower dammit in this context). My protestations went unheeded. As we were coming up on a corner the bus lost control. The bus went sideways and got stuck between the cliffside an a little hut that was up on stilts over the river 300 feet below. If we had lost it 40 feet in either direction you would have been reading this description in my obit. We then had to push the bus into a forward pointing direction. The picture was taken while we were taking care of this. Upon boarding the bus every little Chinese grandma that had kept their mouth shut earlier was yelling at the driver. I at least got to feel a bit vindicated in my previously socially inappropriate outburst. Did I mention that on the bus back to Guilin (where I was going to school) from Longsheng we had a breakdown whilst standing up on a 6 hour bus ride for lack of space? Thanks for visiting K!