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  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
Messages 1 2 

Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by ev on 1 April 2009 3:17pm
Ohayo gozaimasu! Ni Hao!

Woah.. 3 months away, but it feels like 3 years and that nothing has changed.. same old Palin's, eh?

Spent 5 weeks in Japan, 5 weeks in 'mainland' China, and 2 weeks in Hong Kong. In Japan it was mostly Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, and a week in mountains outside Tokyo. In China it was a week in Shanghai, 2 weeks in Yunnan province in SW China, and 2 weeks in Hainan, China's tropical island province in the south.

Got some nice photos, if anyone's interested..

Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by Lounge Trekker on 1 April 2009 3:44pm
If you have a few pictures with you in the frame, send them to Holle and he'll put them on Flickr. We've started sharing pictures of ourselves.

[email protected] .

The address for this set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/saxhoe/collections/72157612959010189/

Good to see you, ev. Happy travels!

Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by canaveralgumby on 1 April 2009 4:47pm
Thanks for sharing your experience, ev. Please do share some photos when you can.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by peripatetically on 2 April 2009 3:21am
Welcome "home", Ev. Glad you're back with us again.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by johnnythemonkey on 2 April 2009 8:11am
Welcome back Eve, sounds like you had an interesting three months.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by tucsonmike on 2 April 2009 2:08pm
Welcome back to the Palin Empire, Ev.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by bIG bLOGGER on 2 April 2009 3:12pm
Good to see your return to the fold,--ev!
Ohayo Gozaimasu! Welcome back into the fold of the palinese speakers of the world! I suppose that phrase means: "Way To Go,Mr.Chinaman!" (..actually,I think it means: "Good Morning,Campers!"in Japanese)

Our blessed Duke of Edinburgh joked to Barack Obama that he thought all the leaders at the G20 'looked the same'...I don't know,for example,how he could possibly confuse the Saudi guy with French President,Sarkozy? Perhaps his senility is affecting his powers of differentiation,but I suppose it's slightly better than him making cracks about 'slitty-eyed little people'...etc.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by geordiegirl on 3 April 2009 3:48pm
Welcome back, ev. You obviously hacd a really great trip, that's marvellous.
Re: Greetings from Dali in south-west China by ev on 4 April 2009 12:23am
What a pleasant bunch of people :)

Certainly was Python-esque moments, especially in China, as anyone who's been there might appreciate... for example:

- Old ladies in traditional costume trying to sell hashish to us in Dali, Yunnan province.
- Toilets so foul that the only way to cope with them was to laugh about it!
- Desserts flavoured with real bird's nests (ever heard of bird's nest soup?) .. it's actually the saliva that swifts use to build their nests, painstakingly harvested and then sold at a very high price:

"Edible-nest swiftlets nest communally in caves, building nests high above the ground. During nest building, the birds' salivary glands become enlarged and produce thick ropey sticky saliva that hardens quickly when exposed to air. Over a period of weeks, swiftlets gradually construct a cup-shaped nest about the size of a human ear. Nests may be white, golden, black, or red: white nests are very clean and contain nothing but saliva; black nests contain plant parts and feathers; red are believed to contain blood from the birds' salivary glands, but the colour may actually come from insects that they have eaten, or minerals leaching from the cave wall.

Harvesting edible birds' nests is dangerous work that requires climbing to great heights in dark caves and prying the nests off the cave wall. Deaths and injuries are not uncommon.

If the first nest is destroyed or harvested before the birds lay eggs, the birds will rebuild—traditionally, the people of Southeast Asia have harvested the nests of edible-nest swiftlets after the birds have built the first nest but before there are eggs or hatchlings. A second harvest is carried out after fledglings have left the second nest.

Today, some swiftlets are farmed, using wooden structures that mimic cave conditions. So-called "house nests" are cheaper but have the same nutritional value as cave nests."
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