How the Cookie Crumbles

An irreverant view of life after SIXTY-FIVE

Yangshuo: Day 18, Part 1 – River Li

34 Comments


After breakfast the bus drove through the Yangshuo countryside on the way to the River Li.

Quick Facts

  • Yangshuo is known for pomelo and persimmon trees
  • Smoking and drinking the hardest vices to control
  • Cigarettes very cheap: as low as $1:00 per pack
  • 90% of men smoke
  • Restaurants have ‘No Smoking’ signs but cannot enforce (afraid to lose customers)
  • Cigarettes bring in taxes (so no smoking not yet imposed)
  • Phoenix Tail Bamboo is used to make clothes and underwear, softer than cotton
  • Chinese people are never quiet; always talking about everything around them
  • They cook and eat dog here, using lots of spices to flavor the meat (i.e. orange peel)
  • People in the country don’t like their pictures taken because you are stealing their spirit (shorten their lives)
  • Don’t like pictures taken of babies, especially, but sometimes, they will charge money (?)
  • Because of tourists, the locals make a good life
  • Vegetable stands everywhere tourists pass
  • Homegrown vegetables + rice, fruit
  • Countryside littered with paper and garbage until you reach the city

Tidbits

At the concert the previous night, no-one clapped, no-one shut-up; everyone had a camera taking pictures and videos. In the dark a sea of cameras lit up the dark like candle throughout the audience.

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All land is owned by the government. If you want to build a house, you must apply to the Village Committee (like a village government) and apply to lease the land for 70 years. Sometimes, you can renew the lease and pass your house, apartment, condo or especially farms until the government has other plans for the land your family has lived on for hundreds of years.

We stopped at an old farmhouse along the way to the River Li for our cruise. Here a Caucasian tourist tries out the old-fashioned broom.

© 2015 All Rights Reserved Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© 2015 All Rights Reserved Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

Down a country road, lined with stands of food and trinkets for sale, we followed Lily, our guide. The people stared at us and we tried not to stare at them. Our cruise boat was old, rusty, not what I’d call clean and run by locals. The gangplank appeared to have wood rot (holes in it) and I stepped carefully. We sat topside instead of inside on old wooden chairs and new benches as the weather was co-operative. Of course, there were trinkets inside for tourists as well as soft drinks.

We were about 25 tourists onboard. One woman with her son and daughter and another mother with her daughter (all in early teens) and a couple families of flip-flop-clad Australians with six youngsters between six and 14 were all onboard. I felt in good company. No way could I have worn runners. My feet at this point of our trip felt broken.

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We passed water buffalo on the shore and for the first time, noticed countryside litter: plastic bags and empty cigarette packages. Electrical towers were seen in the weirdest places, in the middle of nowhere, but farmers still live in the old ways. They have a well, but no plumbing.

Winter (January / February) are not good for tourists. It is too cold and there is no heating system here. One must sleep in a coat. On the other hand, summer is hot and humid and the opposite around July. Another drawback, the water level is high on the River Li and not good for water travel because it is too fast and dangerous.

~ * ~

River Cruise Additional Links:

http://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/guangxi/guilin/li_river.htm

~ * ~

Next on February 27: Day 18, Part 2 –More Yangshuo 

For more related posts, click on China tab at the top of the page

© 2015 All Rights Reserved Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

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Author: Let's CUT the Crap!

I'm getting a little LONG in the tooth and have things to say about---ouch---AGEing. I believe it's certainly a state of mind but sometimes it's nice to hear that you're NORMAL. I enjoy reading by the truckload. I'm a grandma but I don't feel OLD although I'm not so young anymore. My plan is to stick it out as long as I can on this lovely planet and only will leave it kicking and screaming!

34 thoughts on “Yangshuo: Day 18, Part 1 – River Li

  1. I’d rather gnaw on those branches for life than EVER eat a dog. Shudders.

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  2. Another excellent tour. The pictures were great. It is a shame litter is everywhere on this planet.

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  3. 90% of men smoke and they eat dogs. I’m not so sure i was keen on today’s tour Tess. Amazing how such different lives can be across our globe.

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  4. I can’t get past that 90% smoking rate among men. That’s incredible. I wonder what the cancer rate is. Talk about a public health nightmare.

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  5. Great post which I enjoyed with the exception of eating dog. I’m sure that’s no surprise.

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  6. As always, we seem to learn a lot on your tour, Tess. Great pictures as this really hits home how different the scenery is in various areas of China. You have seen an incredible amount of this vast country which even the locals have probably never traveled very far themselves. I hope your poor feet recovers to enjoy the rest of the trip?

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  7. Ugh. I think between eating dog, all the smoking, the trash, and rustbucket boat, I could have definitely done without going on this part of the tour. I know you were glad when you got back to someplace cleaner. Although some of the river pics were interesting.

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  8. Some interesting facts about smoking and government owning the property. I heard about certain countries eating dogs. Some people are skeptical about local Chinese restaurants and I can understand why!

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  9. Packed with fascinating info!

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  10. Great tour guide you are my friend. What a way you have gone, from river cruises in staterooms to .. well, something I am uncertain was safe. You are brave and adventuresome.

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  11. Amazing the differences between cultures. All the human noise would probably do me in.

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  12. I have missed out on a few of your posts Tess 😞 I’m glad you met up with some Aussies..I smiled at flip flops as we call them thongs. Eating dog? Good god Noooooo that is so wrong! Poor fur babies, even with spices ..no no no… Sorry did I say no too much? xx

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  13. Strange I think how we differ and what one people do others find abhorrent. No westerner would eat a dog. Similar thing here in the UK where we absolutely will not eat horse and yet it is is quite acceptable in mainland Europe.

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  14. They are a strange people aren’t they? they seem to eat anything that moves! My daughter uses bamboo nappies so that must be where it comes from.

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  15. Though there are many diferences between Asia and occidentals counries as America or Europe, China has a lot of places to visist and admire. Well,I wouldn’t eat dog, howerer there I ate snake, and I like snails… for others it’s like poison… So, it is good to travel to compare customs, I love travelling! Anyway Tess, I hope you enjoyed your trip. I was 5 hours travelling along the lovely river.

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  16. The contrasts you’ve seen (in ways of life) throughout this tour are remarkable, Tess. But we often stick our heads in the sand about similar contrasts here. I’ve visited a pueblo with no electricity and port-o-lets for bathrooms. It seems that things can be similar in the Appalachian areas here as well. Hummm… does severe cold and snow make people philosophical on Saturdays? Maybe hot chocolate is the answer. 😀
    I really enjoyed today’s tour. Mega-hugs.

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  17. I suppose eating dog to them is part of their culture. Like eating cow is to many of us but would freak out others. But it does trip up my senses. What a different day today’s trip felt like Tess.

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  18. I guess that’s the point of going to countries and cultures so different. Thanks for all the information. The pictures are beautiful although life sounds quite hard…

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  19. Quite the tour. I wonder about that 90% smoking rate for the men… what is the rate for women, do you know?

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  20. What an amazing experience Tess. You really got to see a lot of the real China. I can´t bear the thought of eating any meat, let alone d.o.g. The pictures are wonderful and give a good idea of what it is like. I find more people smoke here in Spain than in Canada although they do enforce the no smoking rules in most restaurants.

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  21. Did you get or feel any of the bamboo clothing? Is it like hemp? Sounds interesting.

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  22. Really liking your slide shows. How gray the days are though. And man, that smoking statistic … Are we their future or are they ours? Maybe never the twain shall meet?

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  23. The eating of dogs just isn’t right. I love your green photos, Tess. Always very interesting, thank you for sharing 🌻

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  24. One buck a pack, eh? Perhaps I should be getting into the back market.

    As for cooking dog, that’s disgusting and horrible. I do, however, support the eating of cats.

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  25. We get clothing made out of bamboo here, thermal tops, tights (hose), that sort of thing, and it is so, so soft and very warm without being thick and bulky. I love it 🙂 But I don’t love they eat dog, never could get over that…or cats… no way 😦 Your photos of the river and the landscape are fascinating, like watching something from an age gone by. And as for your poor broken feet…I bet it took weeks to recover, still can’t get over all you did and here it is not far off a year since you went, right?

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    • It will be a year since the end of next month. I can’t believe all that time has passed already. I marvel more NOW at what we saw, than back then because it was too much all at once. ^^’

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    • I had a periwinkle pant suit once. It sure was soft. Didn’t take up much room in a suitcase rolled. The dog meat is so ick. My feet survived in the end as did I. Most of the pictures in this post were shared once again from a fellow traveler, RJ. Some of my pictures were out of focus, so I turned to him and his generous sharing.

      On Tue, Feb 24, 2015 at 10:30 AM, How the Cookie Crumbles wrote:

      >

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  26. At least there’s some place in the world where there are still some personal freedoms left. (the smoking).

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  27. Ooh, I almost missed this instalment! As others have said, most of us in the western world just can’t get our heads around the idea of eating dog. Dogs are pets. Really it’s probably no worse than eating any other animal, it all depends on the conditions they were kept in beforehand etc, but I just couldn’t eat dog, no way. The smoking stats, wow!

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