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Smart Hitchhiking

On the way to Jiuzhaigou

CHINA | Tuesday, 26 May 2015 | Views [170] | Scholarship Entry

Young? Newly graduated? On a sabbatical?
We’re all travelling the world to find answers. Leaving our comfort zone to understand what we deeply want
In this context, I decided to do something special, travelling overland by hitchhiking from Japan to my home country Tunisia
One of the memorable parts of my trip was the way to Chengdu, China. While planning I saw photos of the Juizhaigo valley and decided to go straight there whatever it takes! I had to make 2200km on a row by hitchhiking
I did it in 3 days and took 15 different rides: 8 cars, 1 truck, 1 motorbike, 2 minibuses AND 3 police cars!
The last ride was with the truck. Drivers accepted to take me for 400km but had to leave me in the expressway. Once dropped, it was 11pm! Not the best time neither the best place because no one could notice me.
I turned on my lighter and waved it! It worked!
A car stopped, the young man was surprised seeing a foreigner! I showed him a paper in Chinese saying that I don't have money and that I need a lift on the way to juizhaigo. He accepted
Inside the car, I take out my smartphone and start a talk via speach translator
After few exchanges, he said something that the application literally translated "You guest. I take you flat. Women. Wine"!
GOD! what am I getting into!
Ok the app doesn't perfectly translate everything, but usually you get the overall meaning, but, here, there's no doubt
I felt confused. I don't drink neither look for a female company, I just want to reach that paradise. I'm sure thankful for this kindness but not this far!
We reach the flat, he opens the door. 2 young women were sitting on a sofa watching tv and smoking. Once they saw me they smiled
I said hi and took sit. The guy went inside leaving me with them
I was thinking “you're 1m93 height! You can't be afraid! Just stay calm, at least you'll take your first shower since 3 days! At worse if they insist, you just break out and leave”
I took my phone and started a talk
"I'm Marouen. He bring me here. I’m thankful. Is he your brother?" I was trying to convince myself that all what I've imagined was wrong
The girls laughed and answered "No No!"
"I see, so, who is he?"
"He is my husband!"
"Really! great! But who's this lady with you then!"
"She's my sister! she lives here with us!"
Thanks god! I couldn't believe how a simple misunderstanding made me imagine the worse
“But, what’s the wine thing?”
"Ah wine! Yes, we own a winery! We are producers!”
Well well, now I got everything! Stupid translator!

Tags: 2015 Writing Scholarship

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