(too late to write any content, but i am uploading some notes i took while on my 3-day trip to chishui to maybe add some details)
6:45am meet fy outside her house, guo in car, pick up zk, of we go to Chongqing. Yesterday fy called me to say she doesn't want to go (family issues, not feeling well, tired, just not in the mood), but I convince her otherwise.
We go pick up Zhou ke. Everyone is packing light, just a backpack, I'm the only one with 2 bags: got my camera bag and my messenger bag full of clothes. I sit in the backseat with the 2 ladies. Zk is eating slices of brown whole wheat bread for breakfast, washed down with yungledou. I take a slice, refuse the drink.
7:45am arrive at Chongqing south bus station, I've been there before, was here when I went to dazu, remember the station. Autumn festival station crowded. A pair pretty cq blind girls, employees helping them out. Zk realizes she forgot her glasses (300). GU and fy go use the bathroom, guo takes an unusually long time.
Bus, fy and I sit in front row, we eat chocolate koala crackers, beef jerky, she sleeps. Guo and zk chat the whole way. In trying to make sure fy is in good mood.
Stop at midpoint rest stop. Now we eat pork jerky. Guo and zk behind us quiet because they're asleep (I thought maybe they ran out of things to talk about).
Road approaching chishui is terrible, stuck in congestion for hours. Although road is busy, half of the road is always stripped so it's essentially single lane traffic for much of mountain road. Loren been here, said the roads were bad when he came many years ago. at one point we stop for almost half an hour, people getting off the bus to stretch their legs and get some fresh (albeit hot and humid) air. traffic police have to come and sort out of the congestion, making the stretch of one lane of traffic to back up so the other lane can pass through.
Arrive in CS, motel 8, next to river but sort of desolate. Chishui is class C in license ranking, meaning it should be 3rd largest city in China. Hard to imagine with poor infrastructure leading into the place. A slight argument over id, zk forgets hers and money. Here in China all guests have to be registered.
Eat lunch nearby, empty restaurant, douhua rice. Manager is a nice guy, gives us some info about the place.
Fy tells me she doesn't want to see me shave so she can see me with a beard.
Back at the hotel, zk realizes their room key card doesn't work anymore. That need to get reception to help them open their room door.
Get taxi to waterfall place. Fy speaks luzhou sichuanese with driver who speaks a very similar dialect. Gets him to take us for rmb$80 and gets number to call him for pickup afterwards. The driver on the license is a woman though. Takes a woofer detour because bridge to site is temp blocked due to construction.
Waterfall place beautiful (rmb$30/person), but we arrive too late so we hurry so we can see all the waterfalls. Very scenic, every few minutes there something to photograph. I fall behind most of the time. Bamboo forest mixed with various ferns. There are the occasional mosquito and i get a few bits, but better than forests back at home. By the end fy is bit tired and cranky but keeps a brave front. Take rmb$20/person shuttle back down. Get taxi pickup back into town. Fy is tired, but energized when she sees all the shopping opportunity in the city center.
We have dinner at a place recommended by lady taxi driver, famous enough that occasionally reservations have to be made otherwise can't eat. They have la-ro, which smells like as but treated pretty good, like a type of heavily cured Chinese pork.
While fy and zk shop, guo and I browse downtown chishui.
We make it to the river, see plaza, see firework, see ktv shop, Sichuan across the water, jiouning town
We get together to eat gelatin dessert. Fy didn't buy anything. Eating lianggao makes me want to cry for some reason.
As soon as we leave the place gets very crowded. We realize it's because it's raining. Before we can get a taxi, it starts to pour.
Were trapped in the rain, hiding first underneath an awning at the edge of a metal pulldown shop front door, then in a tea garden storage warehouse. Guo sacrifices himself to go look for a taxi. He finds one, a driver who almost doesn't want to drive us because he's out of gas.
We make it back, the streets are flooded, all our shoes are soaked.
Shower water pressure is strong, water hot. Toilet is western style, shower in glass stall. Room is missing closet to hang clothes and we can hear our neighbors TV through the walls. There's supposed Wi-Fi internet but it doesn't work. Room has a slightly musty smell. Use blowdryer to dry shoes.