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life's adventures This is the story of my wanderings through Asia

Zai Lin Yunnan

CHINA | Thursday, 2 August 2012 | Views [404]

Cloudy with drizzle, Kunming is full of roads blocked with construction and puddles of rank water. The Hump hostel, which I have previously stayed in, hasn’t changed much at all. I got my bed in a dorm and wander to a nearby restaurant to see if they still have my favourite dish of spicy fried tofu and bacon bits, but alas, they didn’t. I ordered some garlic beans, tofu and rice and head to the terrace of the hostel to eat. There are many travelers, but I was not quite in the cheerful mood of socializing with strangers, so downstairs I went in search of whiskey to calm my nerves.

The Hump bar has changed lots, it is less inviting and more damaged looking than ever. The bartender knows the friends I inquired after, but they too have moved on or are out of town, so I sat at the bar to drink. Soon enough a young group of students from Boston crowd around the bar buying huge numbers of crazy shots, I was invited to have a Scooby snack, and then an alien brain, both sweet and dangerous. I stuck with my whiskey and inwardly reminisced at my memories of being 20. Talking with strangers at the bar was great; I met a cool guy from Vegas, and his Kiwi friend, both living in Kunming indefinitely. We drank, and then went to get street food, one of the best things about Yunnan. Around 2am I went to bed, I have a big day of organising the next few weeks ahead of me.

Today I woke and went straight to the Vietnam consulate to apply for a tourist Visa. Easy as pie. Done. Back to the hump to shower pack and check out, with the intention of taking a late bus to Dali, to the ancient Chinese town that captured my heart two years ago. Filling in time I walked half an hour to the big lake park, which was surrounded by construction walls, so moved on to my favourite restaurant, which was closed today. Stopped for an ice coffee in a French café then walked some more along the edge of the deserted construction around the big lake park, feet started to throb, I headed back to the hostel to peruse the markets downstairs. I still have hours to wait without internet, but at least the hostel and bus is booked for Dali, my visa waiting for me at 5pm, I can breathe for a bit. Not all is lost.

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