the knots

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See the curve right at the start of the red line on the map?

Now, that’s one long bad-ass bridge:


Today’s weather was a perfect 10:


Not too cold, not to hot. A blue sky with just the occasional pretty white puff lounging around.

A beautiful day even for one-handed traffic cops:

fake cop

It was in a tiny place by the highway that I got to know this friendly bunch:

A friendly welcome in a village near Randianxiang

They had seen foreigners riding bikes around here before, but walking? Never!

Well, there are first times for everything, and I just pity the next dude who comes walking through here, when they look at him and say: “What? Another walking foreigner? And where’s your beard? And why don’t you smell as bad as Leike ้›ทๅ…‹ from Germany?”


So anyways I was shifting my weight through beautiful landscapes, taking pictures in the process:


Then this bunch of little friends appeared, and one of them had an interesting question for me:

school children

“Uncle, are you American or Japanese?”

Well, and I shot another one of my boring movies on the way:


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I got worried there for a second that this might have been the last one, but luckily, we’re in the countryside.

Right, I almost forgot to tell you about the geographical situation: ever since Qianling, the altitude has risen to about 1200m.

And there are no mines up on this plateau, so the air is fresh and clear:


A good place to be if you’re walking.

Although a bad place to crawl:


But I guess most places aren’t so good if you’re on your hands and knees.

There was no way to talk to this lady, as apparently she suffered not only from physical, but also from mental problems.

I asked some folks on the road about the situation with this poor soul, and they said there was nothing we (!) could do:

hands and knees

“Let the government handle it.”

Walking offers long stretches of time to fill out with thoughts. Like knot after knot on a rope, one thought begets the other, and then suddenly you get to thinking: Look at yourself afloat, drifting through these spaces, every now and then throwing a HALLO at someone passing by – and by nightfall a soul on her hands and knees has become yet another something that’s been taken notice of.

And I’m supposed to go back to the road and say something like:

“It was already nightfall before I made it to my destination:”

truck at night

or: “Changwu welcomed me with an arch and red neon letters:”


And I was going to tell you about the cigarette as well, I was going to say that there was this dude who insisted on offering me a cigarette, and he just wouldn’t take no for an answer, and how the only way out of this situation was to stick the damn thing in the corner of my mouth and tell him I’d light it later:

“And that’s how it stayed all the way to the hotel:”


I was going to end today’s post with a short tricky line, something like:

“So there I was, at the end of this fine day, with three new blisters on my feet, a smoking Chris.”

But not today I won’t.

Instead I’ll just shut up and think about people on their hands and knees.

  • Hermann

    Vielleicht ist das ja der Sinn deines Unternehmens.
    Ich schätze, es wir noch viele viele Denkknoten zu lösen geben.
    Lauf-Meditationen sind so alt wie die Welt.
    Also, weiterhin alles Gute, Gesundheit, und offene Augen für alles.


  • jule

    schöner tagesbericht, da fängt man auch an nachzudenken wenn man nicht läuft…


  • Marvin

    Hey Chris. Sorry I haven't written in awhile. You will be a much wiser man than most of us when your journey is through. You have always been wise beyond your years. This will only add to your quest to be Solomon like. As always I envy you. Godspeed.


  • Steven

    Welcome to Gansu !


  • DebbieQ

    good lucky!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  • Penny Peng

    When I heard about your stroy, I thought you were crazy like most did, but I have to say I like reading your entries, and may come here often in the future.

    Anyway, hope you a sweet dream after whole day walking, and take care on your journey.



  • Becci

    YEAH! deine schwester hat ihre erste 2.0 in biopflanze!


  • david lee

    I can smell spring from your video, good work


  • Steven

    Some bad links of your new photos in 'The longest Red Line' !
    Please, check.


  • Christoph

    Hermann: Vielleicht wird Denken auch allgemein überbewertet…
    jule: …vielleicht kann man auch nie genug denken.
    Marvin: Smart-mouthing my way through Western China – I miss you guys!
    Steven: Thanks man. Again, please drop by! – About the pictures: It happens sometimes when I'm in the process of uploading. Thanks for telling me though. And I will need to get the "Archive" section fixed asap. Very embarassing the way it is now.
    DebbieQ: Thank you!
    Penny Peng: Me, crazy? Who would dare say such things? – Anyways I'm happy you like reading this!
    Becci: Becci und ihr Schaaatzzzzzzz….
    david lee: Yes, it's definitely spring here. How about where you're at?


  • jule

    ich denke, denken bringt nur was, wenn auch was dabei raus kommt! dann kann man nie genug denken. sonst ist es verschwendete zeit und man kann auch geich was weniger anstrengedes machen… ๐Ÿ™‚


  • Christoph

    …dann hätten wir das jetzt ja auch geklärt! ๐Ÿ˜‰


  • jule

    so siehts aus! ๐Ÿ™‚


  • Christoph

    ich habe nicht das letzte wort?


  • jule

    nein! natürlich nicht…. ๐Ÿ™‚


  • Neil

    Chris I rally enjoy your travel stories and photos, best is seeing the friendly people you meet and the kids.

    the old lady crawling reminded me of seeing on TV doco once about guy crawling on hands and knees and prostrating himself every few meter or number of steps , it was a religious pilgrimage, think it may have been to tibet, not sure, but it was very far, he also had padded hands and knees.

    maybe people would think he mental too, or even you for doing your walk, but each to there own, what ever gives you purpose and happiness, I know you been blessed and blessing other with your experience, thanks for your dreams and guts (bravery) and sharing your experience.


  • Christoph

    Neil: I think you touched on something there – "what ever gives you purpose and happiness" – I like the way you put it! Thanks!


  • Joshua

    Prostrate prayer woman of the plateau

    Culture shift


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