While we waited for our bus to depart, we wondered around the area. The husband got a pair of pants hemmed by a seamstress on the side of the road. The woman stated the price was 10 Yuen ($1.50), but then doubled it when we went to pay, stating that 10 yuen was the price of one pant leg. Welcome to China! So, basically we paid the same price as we would have in Korea ^^.
Breakfast on the street
View from the bus window
I must certainly say I was shocked to wake up and look out the window to see these sights. Let's just say from the height of the bus, it was hard to see the side of the road, all you could see was the sharp drop into the ravine below. I was fairly sure I would not make it home alive.
Perhaps the most frightening part of the ride was the landslides that were to be found all over. While I'm not sure if they're natural, or a result of all the roadwork going on as the road in to Deqen was clearly under a constant state of construction. However seeing how the landslides have clearly tumbled down on roads in the past, and in some places we even had to travel in the opposite lane to avoid them, I really thought that our bus would be the next to have a giant rock through the roof.
I certainly had some flashbacks to my time in Georgia. Part of it was the scenery: the tall mountains, switchbacks on the roads and the sharp drops on the side of the roads; however it was also the people and animals. Cows and goats being herded along the roads, even on this major highway.
Finally we reached the end of our bus ride, the tiny city of Deqen. However, our journey was not quite done. Generally travelers continue another 10 minute drive out of town to Felaisi (飞来寺). If you recognize that character 寺 as temple, you are correct. While the temple is beautiful, the area around the temple overlooks the Meili Xueshan National Park making it the perfect resting point before starting one's journey into the park.
House near Feilaisi
Circumambulating and spinning prayer wheels at Feilaisi
Large prayer wheel
Inside the temple
Money and Buddha
View from afar of Meili Xueshan National Park
And it was here we spent the night, overlooking this enormous mountain range and trying our best to get acclimated to the altitude (about 3,500m above sea level). I had no problems, however, the husband looked absolutely terrible until the next morning. Fortunately, he recovered in time to start our trek. And speaking of the trek, that will come soon enough...
ps. sorry for switching between India posts (which are basically current) and China posts (which date back to Sept. and October). I'm extremely backlogged and finally have some time to get caught up! To follow only stories about China, click the China link, and to follow only stories about India, click the India link.