Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2006
Every one of our trips seem to start with extreme anxiety and stress – work always reaches the unbearable stage; we never seem to have time to finish all the errands; there are always more things to pack than I want; our schedules are filled up to the hours before our plane takes off… Maybe we need to stop doing these epic trips, or maybe we should simply move to Europe.
For the first time ever, I packed, mostly, three days before my trip. Glad that I can reuse my South America trip packing list. More important, many of my friends gave me advice as they took similar trips recently – for example, Lucy’s parents gave me a SIM card for use in China, couple Octopus cards for transportation in Hong Kong, and some Diamox, for which I didn’t bother to call Dr. Fong because I knew he’s not going to like it. Just checked my Sierra Trading Post order, which arrived San Francisco UPS facility at 1:45 AM. I should receive it later today. It has a few items I want to bring with me this trip. Still a few more things to do: getting travel insurance, medical insurance, medicine, etc. I might not pack any lotion, sun block, tooth paste, etc. instead I will buy them in China so I can do a carry-on only (waiting for the luggage in the luggage claim is one of the most time wasting activities invented by human). Again, I think I need to stop doing trips that require me to pack clothes for more than two seasons of weather types.
Shannon, my long time travel agent in China (found her on the internet back in 2002 when there wasn’t many travel information for China online), confirmed all four of our Chinese domestic flights (good thing that they finally move to eTickets). I still don’t know whom our driver is in Yunnan though Big Brother, my driver for my Sichuan to Tibet overland trip (check my TravelLog for details), told me that his friend will take care of us.
Here is the itinerary planned:
- From SFO to Shanghai, and spend couple days there including visiting Suzhou.
- From Shanghai to Lijiang, Yunnan, from where we will start a seven-day overland trip to Zhongdian, Daocheng, Yading (in Sichuan), then back to Lijiang. This will be the toughest part of our trip because we will go over a few 4500M or above mountains. I just learned that it started snow last week.
- After resting for a day or so in Lijiang, we will fly to Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan; and then to Nanning, the capital city of Guangxi.
- From Nanning, we will do a road trip to Detian Waterfall at the border of Vietnam and China for three days.
- Back from Detian, we will take a train to Guilin and Yangshuo, where we will rest for couple of days before heading to Guangzhou, my hometown to celebrate grandma’s 92nd birthday, and to see my uncle who finally could walk again after a recent surgery.
- We will fly back from Hong Kong, just in time for the American’s crazy holiday shopping season.
Time to get ready for another long work day…