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  • Jamie Shannon

A quick update from China

​I honestly don’t know where to start as I sit down to write this. So many things have happened since I left Mianyang almost two and a half weeks ago that it’s difficult for me to remember through my hazy memory the bizarre incidents, (of which there were many), random encounters and strange contradictions I have been a part of.

Like through most countries on this trip, I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing sensational highs but which would almost immediately be followed by a mind crushing low, such is the strange paradox of this particular country.

It’s not just travelling in China that boggles my mind sometimes but travelling by bicycle in general and I say this in a positive way. There truly is no better way of seeing a country except for perhaps walking. You’re open to the elements for better or worse and surrounded by the people for better or worse. When things are going pear shaped, you can’t simply hop on a bus or hitch a ride in a car but when things are going great, there is simply no better feeling than cruising along the highway with the sun on your back not knowing what the next hour will entail. Like anything in life travelling by bicycle is a series of highs and lows and like everything in life, the best things in life are not gifted to you on a plate but are won through a hard fought struggle. I do believe if you truly want to see a place in its authenticity, you’re going to have to pay for it figuratively speaking in blood, sweat and tears. A bicycle can do that for you and if you really want to test yourself mentally, hey take a bike to China! Oh boy. I wouldn’t change any of it though.

Perhaps I shall stop babbling.

I say all this because apart from everything else that has happened, something truly bizarre occurred two days ago. I sit here in a plush four star hotel paid for by the government having been taken to hospital by the police in an ambulance. I was gifted water, food and medicine by some builders at a construction site and whom wouldn’t let me leave with the police without me taking some money they had put together for me.

But I shall save all that for my next post – me being chronologically minded and all.

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