The End Of Summer 2013

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As I put on my new woolly cardigan this morning; casually layered up with a shift dress and black leggings. I thought to myself: summer is officially over! Hard to admit to myself that time literally flies when you’re having fun, but this morning, the reality really hit me hard! Yeah, I’ve been back for almost a month now from my trip to China and it seems just like yesterday…20130907_123128Today I’ve been doing something productive, went shopping with my boyfriend in Cardiff city. Finally started my uni shopping and of course, we visited one of my favourite restaurants of all, its CHIMICHANGA. Tried something different than the usual burritos; instead I ordered the “half piri piri chicken teamed with brown Mexican rice” It was yummy! So no regrets ( Although I seem to regret a lot of my choices when it comes to food) in fact it was refreshing from my staple diet which consists pasta, pasta and more pasta at the moment, because mum and dad are enjoying themselves in Cancun, Mexico. ( I shall be sharing pictures of Cancun soon, so watch this space!) After our gorgeous lunch, we then wandered off to Waterstones looking for some academic textbooks, wow I have to say, I think I would be bankrupted after three years of reading law!! *FACT* harsh reality strikes again!-  Here’s some self reflection: honestly I think I had the best summer ever, very eventful but I can’t not wait for the exciting thoughts of becoming a uni students ahead! STAY POSITIVE ♥

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What I did on my last days in China

Time has gone so fast! It’s the end of my summer trip in China 😦 !! Yesterday I went to a Japanese Teppenyaki resturant with my boyfriend in this new shopping mall and tried some of the most delicious food ever, all for 198 per person. Teppenyaki is a type of cooking method where there is a big grill table with seats around it. I love it because it is super clean especially with the food being cooked in front of you!Image

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The Silver Cave Resort – Yangshuo, Guilin China

Afternoon guys! It’s so hot out currently in Guilin around 35 degrees. Here I am hiding in my hotel room finding things to do, of course that would be blogging time :). Yesterday, we got up at 7 am; had a cooked breakfast at a cute cafe owned by an American called Minority Cafe. ( cooked breakfast is something I seriously miss in China right now, you can imagine my excitement!).The Minority Cafe is a popular spot for foreigners to hang out, starting from early hours in the morning until midnight. The price of the food is relatively cheap compare to other resturants in Yangshuo and the portions are very generous!  

After breakfast we went to meet up with a tour guide taking us to The Silver Cave resort, it’s a must see for tourists and I shall tell you, it was absolutely stunning!

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My Boyfriend’s first impression of China

 

  1. Lots and lots of food being offered, apparently China has this ”guest rule”, which means any guest will be showered with fruits, food, gifts and you can’t really refuse.
  2. Traffic is absolutely crazy!!  In his words: it seems that the only rule for drivers is don’t run a red light.
  3. you WILL get stared at a lot( depending on where you visit in China of course), but don’t take it offensively, it’s just Chinese people being curious because they don’t see many foreigners. He has a tip: smile and wave back at them, usually people will shy away 😛
  4. If you hear the term ”Lao Wai” when you are walking about, more often than not, it means people are talking about you. But don’t be offended, it’s not a racist term, it means ”foreigner” and can be attributed to anybody who isn’t Chinese.
  5. Cost of living is VERY CHEAP compared to European standards in terms of food etc. However, surprisingly branded clothes such as Adidas etc are very expensive.
  6. The weather in China generally is warm, and can be very humid; however as Annie has already pointed out recently there have been very heavy rainstorms (perhaps I dragged the dismal Welsh weather with me).
  7. At meal times/resteraunts expect to have Chinese people looking at you while you eat, again this is not because they are rude they are just curious. If you can use chopsticks reasonably well then it may attract attention as there is a general belief in China that non-Asians simply cannot use them, people will be impressed if you can but if you cannot at least try to use them and experience the culture.
  8. If you plan on using taxis in China make sure they are from a big company as unmarked taxis or “black taxis” as they are otherwise known will often not have a meter and will charge ridiculous prices for foreigners.
  9. When buying something from a market stall in China be aware that nothing will have a price tag on it and the price is settled through bartering. If you are a foreigner people will believe that you are wealthy (which is a reasonable assumption since you are likely to have a lot of money on holiday), prices will start very high and you will have to bargain to bring the price down. However in big chain stores all goods will come with a price tag so it is no good trying to bargain.
  10. Be careful if you want to try any street food, with a lot of stalls there won’t be a problem but some are not very hygienic and the food may make you ill and ruin a good portion of your trip to China (for instance yesterday we walked past a stall selling the fermented “stinky tofu” and half of the street smelt like a cess pit).
  11. Public toilets in China are not seated toilets but sqaut toilets, which obviously means that there is no seat and you have to squat over a hole in the floor (sounds disgusting but most public toilets are), however hotels and apartments will have seated toilets.
  12. Some useful phrases are “bu yao” (No I don’t want it), “Xie xie” (thankyou) and “Mei shi” (I’m ok). In China if you are the guest of any Chinese people these can be very useful as being the host in is very important and as the guest you will frequently be offered food and asked if you are ok.

These are just some of the characteristics of China, and any bad points are far outweighed by the good. China is a great place to be at the moment, it’s just a shame that it is often portrayed negatively in the West.

 

 

 

Quick update in China

Good afternoon fellow bloggers! Currently having my afternoon tea with my cousin and boyfriend, we just went food shopping because we planned to go rafting tomorrow, but unfortunately that’s been cancelled due to the weather condition over here ( we had thunderstorm this morning). So we are all pretty disappointed! Anyway my plan for today is to have one last catching up with my family in Tieling  and travel back to Shenyang tomorrow to pack for my trip to Beijing, should be fun I hope! 😀 

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Beauty of San Francisco

I remember how ”Save Me San Francisco” by Trains has always been one of my favourite songs, luckily this time last year I finally had a chance to experience the beauty of San Francisco! 😀

Renowned for its rolling steep hills, cool summers, fog. All of which marked a stark contrast to Los Angeles where I traveled from and made me realise how ill prepared I was at packing for this trip. Yeah, I only brought one thin blazer and the rest consisted of shorts and t-shirt. Basically I had nothing to keep me warm for the early mornings of San Francisco. The weather reminded me of the typical Welsh weather, foggy, chilly then some sunshine in the afternoon. But of course, San Francisco is about 100 times more fun ;)! Our tour guide Will told us how most people in SF are skinny, well let me tell you, it is not a surprise when you have to walk up all of those steep hills just to get a croissant for breakfast! haha.

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