Today was a strange one. I really “woke up on the wrong side of the bed”, a pretty tricky maneuver when you bed is barely wide enough to lay on your back in! The day ploughed through on a roller coaster of energies and emotions.
We got off the train in Chengdu around 8am and, with the help of a very kind passer-by, found our way to an AMAZING hostel, Sim’s Cozy Guest House. After changing our onward train ticket twice (misinformation and terrible indecision, like I said, strange day) and an awesome egg and tomato scramble we headed out on the town. I was SO ready to move after being on the train for two days!
First impressions of China; clean, organized, friendly locals, very little English, good public transportation, good value, boring architecture. Chengdu has a few rivers running through it and alongside them are beautiful footpaths secluded from the main streets by loads of trees. The sidewalks on nearly every street are as wide as the two lane roads in India! And clean! Love it. Perfect for our walking tour.
We wandered for hours before taking a rest at a tea house in a park. Tate got green tea and I got jasmine and we proceeded to each drink like 10 refills. They serve you a little bowl with tea leaves covering the bottom and set a huge thermos of hot water on the table for replenishing. The tea gets weaker and weaker but I like how the flavor changes with each serving.
I had been majorly dragging from a bad nights sleep on the train and my wierd mood and the tea was just the pick-me -up I needed. We left feeling energized and in desperate need of a bathroom! Luckily, free, public restrooms are everywhere in Chengdu. This is awesome for me because I am a big water drinker and am constantly searching for a restroom. Tate laughs at me because I have the public restrooms mapped out within 24 hours of arriving in a new place! Hey, when you gotta go…
We wandered around the park and stumbled onto something that lifted my mood even more than the tea. We heard it first, random music absolutely blasting out of poor quality speakers. Then we saw it, dozens, no hundreds, of people doing aerobics! There were about 6 or so “classes” happening simultaneously and side by side. It was dueling aerobics, when one song would end people would turn and join the class next door while the teacher raced to change the music and regain her class. Well, I just jumped right in and loved every second of the very low impact and very repetitive workout. I was ill-dressed in my flip-flops and skirt but you should have seen the heels on some of these ladies! My favorite outfit was a long, tight, silk dress worn with white and pink high top sneakers. Classy.
I left the park in such a great mood and realized that a lot of my funk had to do with spending two days in a 8X8 foot train cabin! I am a mover and lethargy brings me down fast and hard.
By the time we got back to our home-for-the-night I was tired and hungry but knew that I had to get a bit more exercise. So, I changed and grabbed my mat before I could reconsider and headed to the hostel gym. Yep, that’s right, this hostel rocks. The gym is a small corner of the game room with very limited equipment but at least they are trying! After an hour of intervals and arms I was dripping with sweat and finally felt recovered from the train.
Tate and I shared a “stir-fried broccoli” and a “spicy tofu” for dinner and it was awesome. When the broccoli first came out it looked like they had steamed an entire head, covered it in chopped garlic, and poured a bit of sauce over it. Turns out it was actually cut into flowerets but it was the equivalent of a whole head. Perfect. Broccoli is one of my all-time favorites. Dessert was three small plums back in the room while watching Up (because our room has a tv and dvd and there is a huge selection of dvds to borrow in the reception, Sim’s Cozy Guest House is where it’s at). These plums were beautiful and smelled unbelievable, I will definitely be searching them out again.
Do you ever have those “woke up on the wrong side of the bed” days ? (lucky, lucky you if not!). If so, do you have any techniques for pulling yourself out of it? One technique of mine is to curl up and watch a mindless tv series that can take me out of my head for a little while. Exercise works every time as well and it certainly helped today.