back in China!

… greeted by beautiful sunny weather in Yangshuo…

Everyone I ever talk to about my travels, they all say the same thing, “You should write a book.”  But, I’ve met more seasoned travellers with stories that I think are much cooler than mine.  But, if I ever did write a book, it would encompass the wisdom I learned from a retired Australian couple that I traveled with in South East Asia.  I remember how this couple tackled travel as though it was just one big adventure.  They were afraid of nothing and weren’t worried about inconvenience or getting stranded somewhere.  They traveled for the thrill of the adventure.  I suppose that wore off on me.

So, when I was back in North America and Anya emailed, that spirit of adventure said, “What the heck!” and I jumped the next plane back to China.  I remember the email that I sent to Mom telling her that I’d miss Christmas.  It didn’t say much, it just had a photo of Anya and I.  You never know where love will strike – and when it does, you just act on it.

Arriving in China, I took a second flight from Shanghai to Guilin and Anya picked me up at the airport.  She had hired a private driver and we drove back chatting the whole way.  The skies had cleared and we were blessed with beautiful sunny weather and once we were back in Yangshuo we visited all of our favorite spots including some cashew nut chicken (for me) and Anya’s favorite dish of cooked eggplant and vegetables.  I had never tried eggplant before this trip but came to love it; the local flavor is heavy in garlic and the taste is out of this world.  We stopped at the Back Street Cafe where restaurant manager Hanna (left side in green) greeted us and welcomed me back to China.  She was enjoying lunch with her family and we all chatted a bit and exchanged greetings.

I was craving beer fish and Erica said that she knew a restaurant that was more catered to locals than tourists and we should be able to get the “authentic” dish that is known to so many local Chinese.  Of course, we had to pick our fish – live from the fish tank – the lady swung the net over her head bludgeoning the fish against the pavement.

 

After 15 or 20 minutes, a massive dish of beer fish and vegetables was served.  I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, if you come to Yangshuo China, be sure to order the beer fish!  It is amazing!  And so ended my first day back in China – I was sure that it would be another wonderful visit.


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Yangshuo Cooking School

Our friend Jennifer, invited us for a cooking class and lunch at the Yangshuo Cooking School.  After we departed the market and came to the school grounds, I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was right on the bank of the Li River overlooking a stunning view of the river, the mountains and also the heart of Yangshuo.

I purchased a bottle of wine at the local grocery store at the entrance to the tourist district.  One grocery store had some imported French wine that sold for 65 yuan per bottle (about $10) and was a nice step up from the Chinese “Great Wall” red wine that, while it was drinkable, left much to be desired in the taste area.  I thought that this import would make a nice photo of (what would soon be our) our lunchtime view.

The view looking up the river towards Xingping; as always, the beautiful mountains of Yangshuo provide a lovely view:

While I snapped photos, Jennifer was teaching Anya and the other girls how to make a Yangshuo favorite: Beer Fish.  We also had a mixed vegetable dish and tofu and another dish of chicken with cashew nuts (my personal favorite).  In this photo, Helen took some of the freshly chopped veggies to the cooking kitchen.  The kitchen has broad open windows with a view of the Li River.  For those who love to cook, you cannot find a more beautiful location in Yangshuo.

Our student chefs mixing up tofu and vegetables:

Jennifer is mixing up the beer fish and in case you were wondering, yes, it is actually made with beer (green bottle on the table).  I cannot begin to describe how wonderful the beer fish is.  Cooked properly it has the most wonderful flavor and is served on the bone.  When you grab some meat off of the fish with your chopsticks it almost melts as it is so soft and succulent.  Oh, and the taste - garlic, beer, and all sorts of other ingredients.  I cannot say that I’ve ever had better fish.  If you come to Yangshuo, be sure to try the beer fish!

And the tofu is ready!

Desert, aside from the wine was a nice mixture of fruit.  China has such a variety of food and fruits and vegetables.  It seems that you could eat something new everyday and still find more culinary experiences.

After we ate, we chatted over a glass of wine and enjoyed the beautiful views of the Li River.  Even if you don’t cook, I’d recommend the Yangshuo Outdoor Cooking School.  It was such a wonderful afternoon.


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Stories, posts, reports, photos, videos and all other content on this site is copyright protected © and is the property of Scott Traveler unless otherwise indicated, all rights reserved. Content on this site may not be reproduced without permission from Scott Traveler. My contact information can be found on the home page.

Back to home page: http://scotttraveler.com