Sunday, December 24, 2006

Reporting from Sanya

The three of us have been in Sanya, Hainan for about 6 days now. We've explored the local area, visiting several beaches, a smaller island, and some hot springs. Hainan Island is pretty big - it took 3.5 hours to drive from Haikou in the north to Sanya in the south - so we've really only been able to see a very small part. Most of the island is farm land, undeveloped, or military. Of course, my own interests would lead us to spend some time in the country, seeing more of the farming life in this area, but ever since our original plan of staying at a be and breakfast proved to be a delusion, we've been in heavily developed areas like Sanya and Wu Long Bay.

Today poor Daniel came down with a fever, so it's been a rest day. I went back to Da Dong Bay (the beach pretty much across the street from the hotel) and walked the beach and swam, then strolled in and out of the many tourist shops here. Finally, I got some "coconut rice" - sticky rice cooked in coconut meat - and came back to the hotel.

To answer some of the questions that came up, the weather here has been very nice. Until yesterday, we'd only had sunny days. The locals are dressing in long pants and sweaters, because it's "only" between about 60 and 80 degrees. To us, though, it's been very comfortable.

I hadn't even thought about taking a picture of me and Hugz, so that little reminder will direct the next pics! I'm usually behind the camera... and it hasn't been as easy to take Hugz around as I'd expected. I'm always very cautious about carrying around my backpack because it can be snatched so easily, and my other bag is only big enough for the camera. When we both want to go swimming, we have to find a beach locker in which to place our stuff. The other complication is that the explanation isn't always smooth about what I'm doing with this doll. I had one woman think I was giving it to her, and it was embarrassing for both of us when I had to take Hugz back!

Anyway, It's been a really interesting exercise to carry Hugz around. I always have thoughts of friends when traveling, but having this part of my good friend has really kept her and this awful illness front and center in my mind. As I mentioned before, traveling in China is not the easiest thing... I think every day of Knittah, of whether or not one day she'll be able to travel here without the restrictions of CFIDS, and if not, what kind of special arrangements we'll put in place in order for it to be possible for her to visit me!

Ok, on to the pictures:

Hugz at Da Dong Bay beach, Sanya

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Chairs for Hire

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Swatchy Sells Sea Shells by the Seashore
Three guesses how many shells my husband bought.

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Zao Cha - Early Tea
Zao Cha is the Mandarin word for dim sum, and this is what we've had for breakfast every day since arriving... of course there are different selections that just what you see here.

Believe it or not, I think Chinese pumpkin is one of my top 5 favorite foods! You see it here in pumpkin pancakes. And then again in pumpkin congee. You don't see it hiding beneath the meat, but it's there!

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A taste of Chinese knitting This boy was sitting near us on the bus on the way to Ya Long Bay. His sweater is knit so delicately, and is trimmed with lace. Sorry - I couldn't resist a big pic of this one. You have to see all those lovely eyelets.

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Anonymous said...

What is so interesting about the photo of the boy, is that you would NEVER see a sweater like that on a boy in America. Let's see, your husband didn't buy any shells, right? And the picture of Swatchy Hugz on the beach is abolutely PRICELESS!!! I may have to make a copy to frame. Which raises the wonderful idea of a printed Swatchy scrapbook! It is such a treat to travel with you this way, Celeste!

Celeste said...

In a culture that is still so divided along gender lines, it really is interesting to see what lines up as masculine and feminine. I thought the same thing as you about that sweater, Knittah.

Your guess about the shells was predictable, but incorrect!

I've been thinking about whether or not we could start offering little souveniers from these travel places in order to raise money for CFIDS research. A scrapbook is a great idea, plus we've had the idea of swatchy dolls, and I have some Chinese souveniers (and some local seashells :wink:) we could also post.

noricum said...

Not zero... I'll guess five then. ;)

Oh... and if you want to do a printed scrapbook, I let me know which of mine you're interested in, because I shrink them 50% before uploading them.

Anonymous said...

That sweater looks a little warm for the beach. let's see some swatchy skin!