English Version 37
The bus to Leshan
I tried to find companions for a tour to The giant Buddha. A minibus is 550RMB and you can be 6 people. Unfortunately there are two groups that are interessted. So I`m quickly out. So now I`m sitting at the bus station and NOW we take off..
I sat with a little map of the city and tried to follow the rute of bus no.55. I didn`t succeed much. I`m not used to going by bus. Suddenly we crossed the river and were supposed to be there. A quick look at a name of the street tells me something I hadn`t expected. Yes it must be here. An even quicker: Where are we on the map to a fellow passenger. There? Dui - correct, it`s NOW.
It`s easier than expected to buy a ticket and get onboard the bus to Leshan, where I later will have to find bus no.3. They are used to my kind here.
And then we set off through my green, green Sichuan. I`m half asleep most of the way. I`m not used to this hot rumbling.
After the first 80 km the surroundings get more hilly. Beautiful green colours all the way.
At the new bus station there`s no bus no.3. But there`s no.1,10 and 13. Some Chinese are going there too, you easily see that they are not locals. They seem in trouble too. There was an English speaking guy in the bus that confirmed it should be no.3.
A local is saying a lot, but the conclusion I understand: No.13 is all right.
I board it thinking that I might have to walk the last piece? But it goes "right to the door".
The Buddha itself disappoints me a little, he`s not that detailed as
I had expected - I`ve heard a lot about him. But the area is an
experience. Filled with stairs in the rock and footpaths up and down and
along the cliff. With temples and teahouses and parks and waterfalls and
lakes with goldfish all over.
At a time I`m confronted with two girls who want to be photographed
with me. I`m on my marks. Something strange might lie underneath this? I
manage to get away with a: Bu yao. But maybe it was completely innocent?
Anyway later there`s a whole family that wants the same. An elderly woman (my age probably) seize me by the arm and drags me with her. Over here! I accept it and a photo session with each of the five members of the family is done, while I try NOT to look annoyed. I don`t think I succeed. As if I was the attraction?
Now I know how to get back, so I slip through the crowd of rickshaws, scooter-and car taxies that are waiting willing to take me anywhere and find the bus stop for no.13.
Right now I`m keeping awake by writing, but it won`t last long then....
In the city busses they are very polite. A ladies voice keep repeating: Give your seat to the old, the weak, the sick, the disabled aso.
And they do! Even to me. I wonder which group I belong to?
When I enter no.55 on my way back I notice how glances are thrown to see if someone gives me a seat. And a young girl lets me have hers. But dear girl you didn`t have to do that. I`m not old - am I?
It`s hard to understand, when you think of how hard it is to buy a ticket or have your fruit weighed in the supermarket. That`s when I really have to FIGHT.
It was one of the things my Chinese teacher in DK said had surprised her the most, when she came to DK. That people were so polite - the other thing was that there were no people in the streets in the evening.
Here there are. You bet.