National Holiday – Day 1 – The Journey to Richard’s Wedding Begins


So we just had a long holiday here.  It was National Day.  Therefore, we had about 8 days of vacation or so.  And while, I would normally travel, things didn’t work out that way this year.  I spent the majority of my time in Changsha with my friends meeting new people at clubs.

But before I returned to Changsha, I went back to Cili for Richard’s (my liaison last year) wedding.  However, arriving there would prove a much greater task than I had initially anticipated.

– Being the fool that I am, I didn’t plan ahead of time to buy my bus ticket to Cili.  Therefore, when I arrived at the station at 1:30 thinking it was plenty of time for the 2:20PM bus, I discovered that the station was jam-packed, and there were even LINES.  This was the one time that I wished there weren’t real lines since I wanted to push my way to the front.

Finally, i realized there was a bored with the earliest departure times scheduled.  The earliest to Cili was 4:30PM.  Great.

By the time that I reached the counter, the earliest time was 5:10PM.  It was still only 2:20.  So, I left and went to go to my friends’ school near the bus station.  Unfortunately, no one understood me (it was a bad Chinese day).  –One guy even took me on his bike to some place and then said “Here you are!”  — …..here we weren’t.  I gave him money and made him go away.

Finally, some guy tried to help me and brought me back to where I had just come from.  Then, when I did successfully explain to people where I wanted to go, they all said that they couldn’t ride motorcycles there because it was illegal.  In the end, I took a cab and made it.

After a relaxing lunch of noodles and beer, I went back to the station and hopped on the bus.  It left, and I was finally able to chill out.

I arrived in Cili and it immediately began raining.  All the taxis and buses disappeared, and I was left at the bus station with only a black car in front of me.  The man opened the door and told me to get in next to the other two people in the back.  I didn’t want to, but I had no choice.  I got in.

The people in the car seemed like friends, and when I told them man that I was going to Yi Zhong, he said that he knew.  Does he know me? I wondered.  Maybe he was some guy that I had eaten with at some point.  Everyone was laughing and telling jokes.  I sat there uncomfortably wondering…who is this man?

I hoped we would arrive at one of their destinations first, that way I could see if they paid, but nope.  I was first.  When I got out, he told me it was ten yuan.  That’s what everyone says.  But the real rate should be 5.  And, well, come on, this dude was driving 3 other people.  No way i was paying 10.  I told him that i wasn’t stupid and gave him 5.  He was angry.  I walked away.

I stopped in to see Linda, but she was a little busy helping Chelsea and submitting an LP.  So, I went searching for a new bag (oh, because in the process of this trip, the zipper broke).

I found a bag, and then texted some people to see if anyone wanted to eat.  Linda was still busy but would meet me shortly after.  So I walked to my street restaurant.  Huang Xing Guo wasn’t there, but Mr. Shi was and he quickly threw me down at a table with people I didn’t know.

No one was eating, but I was encouraged to do so.  But with eating, came the responsibility of drinking.  2- 20 ounce bottles in 5 minutes seemed appropriate.

In the meantime, WC was calling me relentlessly, requiring me to go to KTV.  Finally, I caved and went to meet him.  One man there was angry.  There was a lot of tension.  Especially when he ignored the cheers from WC and turned to cheers me instead.

During this time, Zou Qi called me.  So, I went across the street to meet him.  I had a couple drinks with him but then left to get food at Happy Tom’s–it was not closed as I had thought.  Linda met me.

While we were getting fast food, WC left–with my bag.  He took my bag as insurance that I would go back to my street restaurant and meet him for more food and drinks.

After Happy Tom’s, Linda and I went back to meet WC and company.  We hadn’t been there for more than half hour when Chelsea arrived with her parents (they had just arrived in China from America), Huang Xing Guo, and Mr. Wan.

WC and company left not long after since the party had switched from their table to Mr. Wan’s and HXG’s.

After discovering that I did not yet have a hotel room, Mr. Wan rushed off and got me one at the best hotel in Cili, right across from the bus station.  Fantastic.

Food, beer, and loudness.  Our party broke up gradually until it was just me and Huang Xing Guo and Mr. Shi (I believe).  Of course, a ride was provided for me back to the hotel, and I was there early enough to catch a solid 6 hours of sleep before we were to meet at the bus station around 8:30 AM the next morning.

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