Today was a bit too much for me:
– the distance.
– the inclining road (babies walk on roads inclined)
– my cold.
Well, I could have slept off the cold for another two days.
And I tried finding new shoes (any pair of sneakers would have been better than what I had on now), but.. you guessed it: no size 45 to be found!
So I stuffed a folded sock in my right shoe to provide for some cushioning around the ankles.
And then I got on my way:
Not very many people around:
Just arid landscapes:
Then I hear someone holler at me from behind:
This is Wang Qin 王秦. The 28-year-old, who used to be in logistics in Shanghai, is now riding his bike all around China. And I mean ALL AROUND; the most northern/southern/eastern/western points – he’s going to go ride all the way out there within roughly a year. Why?
Because he wants to.
We walked together for a while (the mountain road being too steep to be biked anyway), just chatting away about this and that.
I felt happy to run into someone who was kind of doing something similar to me.
This has only happened one time on this trip so far, when I met my friend Zhu Hui right on the 3rd day (poor dogs and lucky dogs).
Speaking of which: we’ll see Wang Qin again I’m sure, for his home is just a couple of thousand kilometers further northwest on my route!
Wang Qin and I had an improvised lunch with boiled eggs and whatever the local farmers had to offer:
Then we parted ways – to each his own speed, to each his own goals.
The following can only be described as pain:
Stupid roads, stupid shoes, stupid cold, stupid everything, I thought, ignoring most of the spectacular landscapes.
At some point I had to cross what was indicated as 3000m of road construction work:
Does this give you an idea of the amounts of stupid dust that have surrounded and infiltrated me?
Then, all of a sudden, it was over:
I was in the valley again.
No dust, no serpentine roads. just a long stretch of (inclining) concrete:
At one point, an old guy whom I had asked for the way wanted me to say something in German.
So I did, asking him (in German) what he would like me to say.
“What?” the dude looked perplexed, “I can’t understand you! Speak German, I wanna hear what it sounds like!”
Now it was my part to be confused: “Of course you didn’t understand – it was in German that I just spoke to you!”
“German!” the dude seemed irritated by my stubbornness, “just speak some GERMAN!”
Again, I slowly introduced myself in German and asked him what he would like me to say.
No reaction. We just stood there, while my (German) words were disappearing in the cool evening air.
Eventually, he gave me a very tired look: “Where was it you were going again?”