Walking Guangdong to Beijing Days 3 and 4

Day 3 was a rest day

Day 4

Yesterday (day 3) Darrah decided to go back to Zhongshan in the morning to get her visa done. It was a great chance for me to have a good rest because of the bad blisters. Darrah came back to our hotel in the late afternoon and we had our last dinner with Brian and Qing. We discussed why I had blisters so often and found out it’s because my walking style which seemed to be wrong. They said I should walk with my heel first and finish with toes. So apparently in the past 40 years I’ve been walking incorrectly.

We left the hotel at about 8:30. Darrah walked behind me to guide me to walk properly. “Ann, walk smooth” “Ann, focus on your breathing” “Ann, make your strike longer.” I tried to follow the instructions and to learn how to walk correctly. How amazing it is that I’m learning to walk in my 40s! There are always new things in life to learn no matter if you are young or old.

We stopped and had our last meal with Brian and Qing. We said goodbye to them after lunch. Both Darrah and I are so grateful for what Brian taught us. And walking to Foshan with them was really a good experience. They took a bus to Guangzhou and we walked to Bijiang. We met a teenager and a kid passing us on their bikes. I stopped them and asked for the direction to Guangzhou. I told them about our walk and gave them my name card. They were very surprised, “What? Walking to Beijing?” “You walked from Zhongshan to here?” They gave us a clear direction and said “Good luck, Jiayou”. We got there around 3pm. While we were looking for a hotel we saw them again! What a small world!

We went to a hotel but the reception refused to accept Darrah because she didn’t have a passport. I explained and begged them but they just followed their rules. A lady who was checking in told us about a cheap hotel around the corner. We went there and a man came out of a room which was full of stuff. While I was talking to him, we saw a rat. I expected Darrah to scream but she has a strong heart. She said nothing and pretended she hasn’t seen it. A very small room costs 50RMB. We took two rooms. It was the worst hotel room in my entire life. The landlord said there was WIFI but it didn’t work. My room was really small with shitty equipment. The good thing was a picture with two half naked sexy women right above the bed. Another picture of two almost naked babies on the other wall. When I was lying in bed and looked up, a huge wooden heart was on the ceiling. There were two windows but one curtain couldn’t be closed and the other was not wide enough. The toilet was facing one of the windows and it was so small that I couldn’t put a small chair for my clothes or towel inside. But I needed a shower. So after the shower I walked to the bed without wearing any clothes and I didn’t care if anybody would see me naked.

We went to a restaurant. Darrah wanted some sweet potatoes badly. They didn’t have any. The lady who took our order was very nice so she went to the market to buy some for Darrah. It turned out that she was the mother of the restaurant owner who was a national champion of long jump. We told our story and she kept saying wow you are so brave.

After one day’s walk, my feet didn’t have new blisters! That was a big relief for me. It proved that Darrah and Brian were right, I didn’t know how to walk correctly in the past 40 years.

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Jerry Grey

Jerry Grey

I’m British born Australian living in Guangdong and have an MA in Cross Cultural Change Management. I write mostly positively about my China experiences