China Journals

China Railways

Best of IgoUgo

A travel journal to China by SeenThat

Terracota Warriors Photo, Xian, China More Photos
Quote: Sometimes, journeys generate more than a travelogue…

China Railways

Best Of IgoUgo

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Badaling Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
Unexpectedly, The Cross of Bethlehem begin and ends in China. This was one of the very few changes during the editing stage, since the original manuscript ended in Vientiane, on my dramatic escape to China. Any other of the countries mentioned in the book - even ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 11, 2011

The Back Door to the Middle Kingdom

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Boten Photo, Laos, Asia
Quote:
I woke up in Boten, Laos and, waiting for the bank to open, ordered a coffee at the shop next to the guesthouse. First, they served me a cup of green tea, then a big bowl of noodle soup with fresh sliced tomatoes and, after I complained for a second time, they served a diluted coffee with too much condensed milk. The small village consisted of some shops and buildings that housed the officials. The only people staying overnight were shop owners in their adjacent houses, officers in the closed compound next to the border and truck drivers in their vehicles with noisy whores. Its single street had some twenty buildings scattered along it and ran parallel to the narrow road leading to Udom Xai, northern ...Read More

Running Out of Lines

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Kunming Railway STtaion Photo, Kunming, China
Quote:
A bit before 8:00 AM I arrived at Kunming, the city of a million bus stations. With no trash bin in sight, I took the nylon bag, filled it with my last dinner and spent a few minutes in the station searching for a place to dispose of it. There weren’t any signs around and I couldn’t find my terminal. Worse yet, the streets were marked only in Chinese and my map wasn’t very good. Feeling too sick from the earlier food poisoning to search for a hotel, I took a taxi directly to the Camellia Hotel, the backpackers’ headquarters. I sank into bed and kept my electric kettle busy all day, while increasingly developing a taste for CCTV9.Next day, still worried about the food poisoning and thinking...Read More

A Casual Encounter

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Terracota Warriors Photo, Xian, China
Quote:
The next morning Xian was covered with snow and frost. My new beard helped me to cope with the cold. Rooms around the main road in front of the train station were expensive, maybe due to the many tourists. I decided to try my luck elsewhere and began walking in ever increasing circles. Shortly after, I discovered the red light district which was surprisingly active at this hour. Women sat inside small rooms next to coal heaters and invited passersby to enter. Nearby were many hotels. In the one I chose, the receptionist didn’t speak English, and after some unsuccessful attempts at communication, the receptionist took out a paper and showed me her scribbled Chinese, thinking that I simply spoke some we...Read More

Carla Forever

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Badaling Photo, Beijing, China
Quote:
Next morning, train tickets to Beijing were still unavailable at the train station. An agent nearby wanted a forty-Yuan premium over the ticket price. Hoping to find something better, I wandered around and spotted an office selling tickets for the same day. There, the touts returned their tickets at noon, since that was the last opportunity to get a refund. Then the ticket seller sold me one at the regular price. A fast "T" class train took me to Beijing, and in the freezing morning, I had no choice but to take a taxi to the town center, since the final train station was at the western terminal, not the central one. All the dormitories listed in my guide were closed and after a long search...Read More