Wednesday, December 16, 2009

December 17, 2009 - Merry Christmas and Goodbye China!

First of all, Merry Christmas everyone! We've had lots of time on our hands here in Kunming, not to mention significantly more purchasing power than back at home, so we wound up taking some crazy photos one day downtown....

So from our castle to yours, all the best this holiday season!

It's a little early for Christmas, but we leave tonight for the fairly remote northwest of Vietnam, and we're not sure how much internet access we'll have. (PS... turns out our internet conked out in Kunming so this is being posted from Dien Ben Phu, Vietnam anyway!)

This will also mark the end of our longest stay in any one country, and we leave with mixed feelings. We've really enjoyed these last few months in China and leave many things with a heavy heart - the incredibly welcoming people, beautiful scenery, fantastic food and facilities and a very interesting, vibrant and fast-changing culture to observe from our comfy saddles. It will also be the first time we venture into territories not knowing one of their major recent past or present languages, which leaves us both a bit apprehensive and me quite sad.

That said, we are also very excited - the next two months will bring many kilometers of beautiful scenery, hopefully speedy biking (we've lightened up alot, sending home our tent and cooking stuff) and wonderful new cultures to discover. Not to mention loads of beaches and sunshine. After a beautiful two months of biking through Vietnam, Laos, Thailand and Malaysia we'll join friends for a break first in Singapore and then in Bali, finally ending our year of "lifecation" with a great bike up the west coast of California, Oregon and Washington to BC... with all of that ahead of us, it's a little tough to feel too sorry for oneself.

So farewell China, where we've both laughed and cried, and loved every minute of it. Here we come, Southeast Asia!

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