Day 205. 82km. Wuwei – Shibalipu

Posted: December 3, 2015 in China, Cycling
Tags: , , ,

They stood at the freeway exit with their SLR camera taking photos of us. Only this time, it as the police who had instructed us to leave the freeway. I was holding my breath.

Fixing the flat tyre

Fixing the flat tyre

They drove right past Wendy and told me to leave the freeway. She thought we could just continue on until she realised they meant business waiting for us at the freeway exit with their lights flashing. I acted dumb (not difficult) and let Wendy do the talking. I felt like their tone was different to me, the Weiguoren (foreigner). To Wendy, they acted like her (and our) guardian angel. There is no place ahead to sleep for many kilometres so you should leave the freeway here. Acting all innocent and grateful, we left the freeway. They now have some great snaps of the Weiguoren and the Zhongguoren (Chinese person).

I have some great snaps of the mass of people that looked over my shoulder while I was looking at Facebook on my phone. Every time I lacked my privacy, the camera went on. I might have irritated some of them. Damn. ☺ Actually, it all became a bit of a joke, and I took photos of the whole village looking over my shoulder.

Looking at Facebook over my shoulder

Looking at Facebook over my shoulder

The morning was spent in Wuwei fixing my Chinese mobile internet, getting some money and finding a bike shop to fix Wendy’s brakes. We both felt a bit stupid when the person at the bike shop fixed the problem in 10 seconds in front of our eyes. A brake cable had come out of its holder and needed to be put back in.

My flat tyre later in the day took about 30 minutes to fix. I was amazed to learn that Wendy did not have anything to fix a flat tyre, and had not had one. She watched on in interest as I fixed the problem. It is kind of weird to think that I was being looked on as the technical expert (!).

Our evening ride turned a bit problematic when we realised we had misread distances and altitudes and it got dark a long way from anywhere. Luckily, the cluster of shops called Shibalipu (= 9km shop in Chinese) popped up. It has a little hotel. It is not 9km from anywhere I know of..

  1. Eliza Waters says:

    It’s hard for me to imagine a country where foreigners are admitted, but not allowed in most places. Mao still rules, I guess.

    • We were not allowed on the big multilane freeway. That is the same in the west too. It is just that the multilane freeway is the fastest way to get from A to B.
      In Holland we would have got a big fine cycling there and probably even made it on the news. 🙂

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