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Published: January 8th 2011
Last weekend we actually got three days off for New Years so Nancy and I and a dozen others headed for Sanya, our favorite get-away spot, for a New Years weekend of partying. It's only an easy two hour flight from Wuhan and a 30 degree increase in temperature. I had already looked after booking a few rooms for everyone at the same place that Nancy and I have stayed on previous visits. Once again, we were not disappointed. The spacious three-bedroom place was incredible with two floors of breathtaking views of the ocean and tons of room for the five people that shared it. We shared our two-bedroom "apartment" with Janice and were also very impressed with everything. The three single rooms were also very nice. Everyone always has a view and it is pretty hard to beat the $50 per night/per room price.
We headed over to Fat Daddy's next door as soon as we arrived for a few drinks. It was great to shed our winter clothing and enjoy the sea air and the warm temperatures. The next day found us eating a great breakfast at Fushan Coffee, a one hour walk along the beach from where
we were staying. Although Sanya is a beautiful place, it still doesn't fail to disappoint with the day-to-day Chinese way of life. It took six waitresses to get our meal, and everything was served as it was prepared, one thing at a time. Coffee never comes right away and usually there is something that doesn't come, as a result of the language barrier. However, the coffee was delicious and we all pigged out on bacon, eggs, toast and croissants for about three bucks apiece.
In the afternoon, we headed off to the hot springs, a beautiful resort about an hour's drive away. China drivers are nuts but the guy driving us was insane. On the way back, we figure that we almost ran over about ten people. People with suitcases crossing the road, families, and cyclists were all fair game. He swerved, honked and sped his way home through traffic and around corners, leaving us all lurching back and forth in the passenger van. Throughout it all, he carried on with his spitting out the window every few minutes, one time getting a cyclist right in the face, much to the annoyance of the guy. That night, we had
a great meal at Casa Mia, a wonderful authentic Italian restaurant next door to where we were staying. It is always easy to find great places to eat wherever you go in this country.
We ended up at Fat Daddy' as the clock struck 12 on New Years Eve and then a few of us headed out clubbing for another three hours! One thing that is impossible in finding a taxi in Sanya. It takes perseverance and patience as one person told us. In Wuhan, there is a constant stream of them going by, in Sanya we were lucky to find one at any time. However, we talked one of the sidecar motorccycle taxis to take all five of us to the nightclub area at 12:30 in the morning. Once again, nobody speaks any English but we speak enough Mandarin now to learn new words (like the name of the club area) and chatted away to the driver as he raced through the city streets and sidestreets. After the night out, we managed to talk another one into taking us back to our rooms.
Nancy, Janice and I spent the last day, Sunday, lazing around on the beach.
For a number of reasons, including two flight changes by the airlines, we didn't leave Sanya until midnight on Sunday so had a lot of time to blow. We spent a lot of time in the ocean swimming and couldn't believe how warm it was, definitely warmer than the lake I grew up with in Quebec. Spending January 2 on a warm tropical beach is not the most difficult way to while away an afternoon. That evening, we headed over to the Howard Johnson resort down the road to have supper and waste another few hours. We managed to sit there for three or four hours and milk it for what it was worth until we finally headed for the airport for the last couple of hours of waiting. At least we were entertained by live music for most of the wait 😊
All in all, it was a great weekend for all of us. The only damper in three days was one of our friends was attacked by monkeys on Monkey Island, another local tourist site. She required a trip to the hospital and got several stitches in her arm and finger as a result of the bites.
But a few IVs, shots, bandages and a lot of money later, she is a little bruised and abused but on the mend.
Next weekend, we start our five week winter break. Haven't purchased any tickets yet because we want to make sure we are totally moved and settled first. We have started carrying stuff over to our new place and should be done in the next couple of days. Life here continues to be an adventure!
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