Monday, November 20, 2006

Escape from Dangling: Day 11


The next day we all slowly dragged ourselves out of bed and recommenced the previous day's main activity, namely sitting around in the cold and wet and being miserable. We all had headaches, were all sore and none of us were well rested, but we were also not as grumpy as we were the day before. Knowing that we were about to leave made us just a little more cheerful. We left as soon as we finished the food we had promised the tent owner we would have, though there was one final insult: the lady across the stream who had made us dinner tried to charge us twice the amount she had said we had to pay the night before. We ignored her and paid the amount she initially asked for- luckily we had hit off with her husband so he told her to just take what we gave her.
The walk down was treacherous, as the ground was even slippier and muddier after the previous night's rain, but it was much faster than the assent. The day before was Chinese National Day, and this day marked the height of travel when the massive wave of Chinese travellers finally made it to places as isolated as Dangling. Every twenty minutes we passed a group of travellers heading up the mountain, and when we got down to the village there were at least a dozen cars and vans when before there had been none. The owners of the guesthouse we had stayed at told us that they were completely filled up. It didn't matter; we had thankfully arranged for our driver to pick us up that day. By the evening we would be walking in the luxurious streets of Danba, though not before having to take the extremely congested road back. Our driver spent a good amount of time cursing the idiot tourists who were attempting to drive to Danba, but didn't know how to deal with the narrow, rocky roads they had to drive on to get there.

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