Travel

lijiang, kunming + leaving 🇨🇳 china travel diary

We’re at the end of this bunch o’ photos! Today’s post is the last bits of our time in 丽江 (Lijiang) and 昆明 (Kunming) and my last days in China.

This is the touristy old town area of Lijiang, filled with shops and restaurants and whatnot.

I bought some of these little bags from an older woman making them – they’re filled with eight or ten different types of plants and herbs used in traditional medicine and it’s supposed to ward off illness/bad luck/evil spirits/etc. My aunt told me people hang them in their cars or closets, by their beds, or even sew them into the inner pockets of their bags and jackets.

The man here is making ginger candy. I’m very unclear on the whole process, but you have to loop it around a hook and stretch it out, then repeat and repeat until it’s done. It’s delicious but does have a pretty strong ginger flavor, so if you’re like me and can’t handle spicier foods then you might have to only take one bite at a time.

& back to Kunming! We were staying with my grandparents, so it was a much more lowkey time with a lot less touristy activities – i.e. excavating old baby photos. I am so impressed with this outfit I’m wearing. You can imagine it in adult size on a hip mannequin in Urban Outfitters: gingham bucket hat + white t-shirt layered under spaghetti strap dress with some funky graphic + color blocked windbreaker… I mean, my god. I think my style peaked at age 3.

We saw an ad for chicken tacos from KFC and decided to try it out. The fried chicken acts as the taco shell and there’s lettuce, corn, and “salsa” (really just tomato) inside. There’s supposed to be some sort of guacamole too, but when we went they told us they were all out. My expert culinary review is 2/10, purely for interesting gimmicky value. It kind of feels like someone described a salsa to someone else who had never ever had or even seen it before, and then that person produced this. Save ur time, just get regular fried chicken!

I have no idea what happened here but it looked like a funky art installation! The spaces between the bars at the top used to be filled with glass but they must have ummm, how do you say in technical terms, done some shit to make them crumple and fall out.

After high school I spent my gap year taking some Chinese classes at Yunnan Normal University. My brother and I took an afternoon to walk around the campus and try to find my old classrooms and hang out spots but we got so lost and ended up just sitting and eating ice cream for a while.

The mecca for all minimalist stationary obsessives: Muji!

My Minion obsession is well documented, and here’s some more lol. I bought the ones on the bottom and they were delicious! I aspire to be one of those people who gets profiled because their entire house is decorated according to a very specific theme…

And here’s some fun food too! Chip flavors are so interesting to look at country to country – the pink one is ‘Mexican tomato chicken’ flavor and the blue one is ‘squid ink’. The animal sweets I just thought were funny ugly.

I left by myself because I had to start school, so I flew to Beijing and spent my layover with my family there. Their dog is called Amy, which is an incredibly boring name in comparison to my other cousin’s – their dogs are named ‘Wool String’ and ‘Dumb Dumb’ (these both make more sense in Chinese).

We picked my little cousin up from dance class and I was amazed by this duck backpack her classmate was wearing. How cute!!

And then it was back home to the U.S.! I watched this Chinese children’s movie called ‘Cats and Peachtopia’ on the plane and I highly recommend if you enjoy kid’s media involving animals lol. It’s about a cat named Cloak (!!!!) who lives in an apartment in the city with his dad, who’s named Blanket (!!!!!!!! These names also make more sense in Chinese lol). Cloak’s mom died when he was little in a freak accident but Blanket never really told him, instead just saying his mom went to the magical land of Peachtopia where you can eat peaches all day everyday and just have a ball. Blanket’s also very strict and overprotective of Cloak because of aforementioned freak accident, but little Cloak yearns to go out, find his mom, and eat all the peaches in Peachtopia. He runs away and hijinks ensue. It was a great movie and good practice for my Chinese!


Thank you guys 4 reading! I’m glad I finally finished this series of posts and looking back at these photos and thinking about this time really makes me miss China.

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