my wet shoes

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My down filled sleeping bag kicks some serious arse.

I actually woke up because I was feeling uncomfortably warm in that unheated frosthole they called “hotel room” in this tiny strip settlement on the highway:

winter in Shanxi

Of course my poor shoes had no way of drying out in a place like that.

So, after a long time of quiet meditation on this problem, I decided to leave the warmth that was wrapped around me and put my feet into the wet and cold:

gaiters

What a disgusting feeling…

Then I ventured out into the snow:

snow on the road

I’ve said it before: I’m a sissy.

I hate the cold.

But there was no way around it – another night in the frosthole? Fuck no!

I warmed up in a small noodle restaurant:

food place in Shanxi

That was after kilometer 7, with another 8 or 9km to go. Short distances, really.

But I kept slipping on the icy parts of the road, so the best way was to either wade through the deep snow, or walk in the middle of the road when there were no cars around:

empty road

This is a radar-patrolled area, by the way. Better not walk too fast.

All the places next to the highway looked the same, too.

As if I was walking and walking and yet staying in the same damn place:

village in Shanxi

Anyways, after what seemed like forever and a day, I finally made it to my destination:

red coat

Quwo, a larger settlement where I expected to find a decent hotel and a supermarket to put some chocolate in my tummy.

And so it was.

And I was welcomed in the most charming way possible:

hello uncle

“Hello uncle 叔叔好!”

Adorable.



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