Jess Marshall

Jess off to c the world

Jess Marshall

After spending three and a half years in New Zealand and Australia I've caught the bug again and headed for South East Asia. I've traveled Malaysia (peninsula and Borneo), Sulawesi, Laos, Philippines and volunteered in Thailand for 8 months at a Children's home, it is mainly children from the Karen villagers. Its was an awesome CHALLENGE and an experience I will never forget! No really i loved it, but learning a completely new and very different culture has its challenges. I am now in Gansu Province in China teaching English for a year, I've completely fallen in love with teaching! Its so rewarding, definitely the jobs for me for the next few years, some very exciting times ahead!



Asia » China » Xinjiang » Turpan October 4th 2012

We arrived in Turpan early morning (known by the Chinese as Tulufan) after our delayed night train from Dunhuang. The train station is literally in the middle of no-where, no sign of a town or life what so ever. I knew it was a popular spot on the silk road and there was definitly things to do there but coming out of the train station I started to wounder if this was the right place. Ben was seriously starting the think where the hell I had brought him and what did I think would be interesting here. The drive from the train station to the town was about 40minutes and for 35minutes there was nothing just flat desert land. The taxi driver dropped us off at a hotel and they wanted over 300rmb per night, we ... read more
The view from the sand dunes
GaoChang Ancient city
Checking out the view

Asia » China » Gansu » Dunhuang October 1st 2012

Dunhuang for me was the part of the trip I was looking most forward to, we just had to get there. I was only around 5hours by train from Jiayuguan but the train times were all really stupid times. In the end our train was supposed to depart around 5am infact it was delayed and departed just before 7 and even then became further delayed so we eventually arrived around noon. Then according to all the information that I could find we wanted to head for Charlie’s café which was apparently across the street from the bus station. Unfortunately the bus station moved 3years ago and the café is no longer opposite it. So after we took a taxi to the bus station we then found out from two German guys that we had to walk ... read more
Trekking into the sunset
The perfect evening
Good-morning Dunhuang

Asia » China » Gansu » Jiayuguan September 29th 2012

The trains had been booked and the day had finally arrived, I was so excited, no matter how much I travel and to how many different places I still get excited by it all. It had been a busy couple of days before leaving and our train departed Lanzhou which was just over an hour away and 840pm. In the morning I had been at school and in the afternoon private tutoring, Ben was ready and waiting so as soon as I had finished tutoring we could be off to the bus station to leave for Lanzhou. Kindly Cindy, Daisy’s mum (the girl I tutor) took us in the taxi to the bus station as we had no idea at all where it was. And that was that the trip began. Arriving in Lanzhou we easily ... read more
Heading up
Chilling at the top
Taking in the amazing view

Asia » China » Gansu » Baiyin September 27th 2012

Life in Baiyin is fantastic! Its been an amazing first month. Just after my last blog Carole arrived, my new flatmate and school buddie. And she's awesome! Been invited out for dinner and lunches calmed down a little, although we still have been invited to some delicious meals both at people's houses and restaurants. Karakoe has become a weekly part of our lifes, Ben and Myself were invited along with Ben's landlord and friends to KTV for an evening of singing and eating, we enjoyed it so much we took Carole and Bob there a few nights later. They have a choice of English songs and for where we are it is a pretty good selection, and it makes a great night out rather than just sitting and talking to eachother. With there only been four ... read more
At the top
Across the river
Hot Pot party!

Asia » China » Gansu » Baiyin September 9th 2012

Wow, what an amazing first week in Baiyin, so much has happened! The people so friendly and welcoming it feels impossible to repay them. We are constanly been invited for meals, sometimes 3 a day and we have to apologise and posepone one of them. As we are the only westerners in the city and they never see tourists (although it is a great place to live there really isn't anything for tourists to come here for) it's special for them to be friends with the few westerners in town. So for the moment at least everyone wants to speak with us and invite us into their homes or to restaurants, they give us some really special gifts, put us on the head tables at large dinner parties and refuse to let us pay for anything ... read more
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Asia » China » Gansu August 31st 2012

After leaving Yangshuo at 8 we had an hour drive to Guilin followed by a flight to Xian then a further flight to Lanzhou before finally been picked up by Mr Lee at the airport for the 1hour drive to Baiyin! It was a long tiring day but the drive from Lanzhou to Baiyin was amazing but in a completely different way, like nothing I have seen ever before. Gansu is mostly desert and although from november to march it barely rises above 0'c it rarely rains. Everything is dry but there are some desert shrubs and the mountains are stunning. But as soon as you arrive into Baiyin its completely flat, the city is very modern and beautiful in that sense as you drive in. We were literally taken straight out for dinner, I very ... read more
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Asia » China » Guangxi » Yangshuo August 28th 2012

Wednesday: The first day was basically a day to just relax and have a look around. We could eat meals at the school canteen and they were pretty good, we ate rice with a selection of about 7 different dishes for lunch and dinner and toast or noodles for breakfast with soya been milk. Mel and myself missed breakfast as it finished at 8:50 and I didn't really want it so early as the jetlag was still killing me but we got up and checked out the city. Yangshuo is very beautiful even more so than Guilin, the mountains and the river and although some of the buildings are old and there is alot of construction work going on there are some very nice areas. We checked out West Street where the market it and they ... read more
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Asia » China » Guangxi » Guilin August 21st 2012

First stop Guangzhou!! But only for a few hours to wait for my connecting flight to Guilin, my flight was a little delayed but that just made it less of a wait so I wasn’t too bothered. However that fact that it took an hour and a half just too clear immigration was annoying, in the middle of the day when they have flights arriving all the time I understand but at 1 in the morning when we were the only flight! Really! Well at least I didn’t have to wait for my bag to arrive; it had probably been around the carousel a dozen times by the time I got chance to collect it. Anyway all I then had to do was make my way over to the domestic departures to relax for a few ... read more
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Middle East » Turkey » Marmara » Istanbul August 17th 2012

My flight involved a 15hour stopover in Istanbul and I was sooo excited! Absolutely gutted that I couldn't spend more time there but so excited to finally beable to visit the city across two continents. My flight arrived shortly after 5pm and left just after 9 in the morning so I wasn't going to be over ambious but I wanted to visit the Blue Mosque and Turkish Baths. I had booked a hostel close by the Blue Mosque and was hoping it would only take me an hour to get there, mmm. Clearing immigration in Istanbul takes a while!! Then I thought the directions were pretty clear on how to get from the airport to the hostel but they missed to important things out! So I finally arrived around 730. After quickly checking in I rushed ... read more
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Asia » China » Shanghai July 27th 2012

My last day in China had finally arrived a little too quickly, but it was here and it was going to be a very long day. I had managed to get a whole 3 hows sleep before getting up at 430 for the bus to Shanghai. We had to arrive in Shanghai early to meet two of the teachers flight hence the super early start. But this gave me a whole day to spend in Shanghai along with Shirwa, Marcus, Carlos and Imani. My flight was 1am in the morning so I had to leave for the airport after dinner, Carissa's flight was in the evening so she wasn't able to spend the whole day with us but at least had a chance to take a look around Shanghai. So we arrived in Shanghai around 930 ... read more




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