Sunday, December 31, 2017

2017 Wrap Up

It's the end of the year, and just like every year end it feels like time flies like a blink of an eye. So let's take a look at some of the major happenings in Winnee Raplin's life in 2017.

First of all, I had a major breakthrough, I overcame my fear of going out, meeting strangers and talk to them. Encounters after encounters later, I was honored to be given the opportunity to join a Sabah famous women association. Then I joined toastmaster, a wee bit expensive yet amazing club full of amazing people and fun learning experiences.

Learn together, have fun together, grow together. 

Oh, almost forgot, I found my long lost aunty through this association! Fate has reunited us after so many years. She's my grandfather's sister's daughter who has moved to Kuching long time ago but moved back to KK after that. None of us knew each other until a photo of a relative surfaced. Life is crazy isn't it?!

Christmas gathering with these successful inspiring powerful kao kao women.

Thanks to God's blessings, my house get a little makeover after 10 whole years. Can't believe it's been a decade since we moved here. The house turned out better than we expected, but of course, over budget as well. I'll write it in another post.

This year is also my first time to step out of Malaysia, thanks to God's blessings again, the whole family got a chance to travel to China and witnessed some of world's most beautiful natural heritage. It was definitely an unforgettable experience. Oh I really need to finish writing that post. The first 3 parts can be found on the side link. December has been busy.

Let's see, I also picked up ballroom dancing. I joined dancing performance and competition, another great experience, Thanks to my lovely teacher Patricia, the most friendly, loving and dedicated teacher I've ever met, who has poured her heart out in making sure we get every steps right and graceful.

Here is a list of people I wanna thank to.
Firstly, my family, I know we don't get along sometimes, but still whenever there's no storm around, I appreciate your strenuous effort to put up with my emotional turmoils.

Secondly, this is one of the most important people in my life since 2016, she's Sandi James, my psychologist from Australia but claims Sabah as her home. We might be very different people with different views and beliefs, but somehow, we just clicked. Sometimes she said things that sound ridiculous, nevertheless, I still listened to her every word. Thanks Sandi. I wish you every happiness in Chiang Mai with your wife. And I also wanna thank my psychiatrist Dr.Wendy Shoesmith from UK for taking over Sandi's position after she left for Chiang Mai, for helping me to get through really tough times.

The next group of people are a bunch of people I cherish a lot as well, they are my support group buddies. Every month, we meet at UMS polyclinic. Can't believe our support group has been going on for a year. Facebook memories reminded me that. Thanks Marry Ann, a young lovely self published author for being so supportive especially when I'm down. Congratulations on your book! Love the poems! We have some good news in January, stay tuned!

Next, I wanna thank my best pal who just came from UK this year - Paula. Thanks for not forgetting your primary school buddy. I enjoyed every moment spent with you especially during the girls night out. Oh and thanks for coming to my toastmaster club meetings and ordering my cakes. Congratulations on your graduation! See you soon pal!

And not forgetting Teh Suh Jing, my another best friend who checks up on me every now and then, who has been a loyal companion throughout these years, who prayed for me, who just being her quirky yet funny self. Thanks kawan. I hope little rabbit will be your companion when you're feeling lonely just as I do.

Oh and 1 more thing I almost forgot, I started my own baking business! Yay! At first, it was one hell of a road, everything seems to be falling apart. Without the help of my mother, I wouldn't have pull it off. As time goes by, I got more and more used to the ins and outs of the industry, I'm better at dealing with frustrations. I just wanna say, my mother was the main pillar of this business. She really helped a lot, from buying ingredients, helping washing the utensils and delivering the orders. Thanks mom! She definitely deserve some good treats.

Oh I also got my driving license! That one was another challenging process for me. Thank God I passed in one go!

And finally, thank God for 2017, there were certainly ups and downs, there were times I almost gave up, yet what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Thank God for blessing me with a lot of businesses, especially December, all my capital was earned back. Now I know what it means by hard earned money. Damn hard. Thank you all for supporting my cakes and pastries, especially all the wonderful aunties aunties from the association. I really appreciate it. I'll improve my baking and decorating skills. Durian season is on the way, get ready for some yummy durian cake!

I decided to call it Winnee Bakes, short and simple, easy to remember. I just created another individual account for my baking business, follow winneebakeskk.

Happy happy New Year everyone!

Friday, December 29, 2017

China Trip Summary

I know what you guys are thinking, another post about China trip?  But hey, it's my first time out of my own country and I just wanna make sure all the details are documented for my own reference in the future. We've spent over 10k for this trip, so I might as well record everything down and make my trip memorable. So the Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 journeys are all about the itinerary. This post is all about what's I've learnt, what I like and dislike about this trip and everything about China.

Here are my observations in China.

Let start with their traffic and transportation.
They drive in the left lane and have left driver's seat. They have many weird vehicles, and it seemed like some of this drivers don't care for traffic at all. They honk a lot! Everyone was like this is my father's road, even the pedestrians. Even our driver Mr Wang, he just loads and unloads us wherever he feels like it.  

This type of 3-wheeled vehicle is very common in China, these drivers just park anywhere, even on the side of a busy street, they just park and start to sell their things, mostly food and fruits.

When the weather is uncertain, you gotta be creative.

Next, their food.
For the entire trip, our meal had been repeating itself until we didn't feel like eating it during the last few days. Every meal comes with 10 dishes, and out of the 10 dishes, about half of them were PURE 100% vegetables. Their vegetable dishes are 家常菜 that mum cooks every day at home. So I felt like eating home food again which I didn't want, cause I wanna taste something different, something delicious that I saw a lot on the TV. 

Then we have 1 soup, 1 chicken/duck which was SUPER SKINNY, some 腊肉炒菜 (Chinese bacon stir fry with veggie). Their 腊肉 were mostly fat 肥猪肉, so the dish was very oily. On the first day, Xixi warned us about their dishes will be salty, oily and spicy. At first, we only tasted salty and oily, there was no spicy at all. So the Labuan lady asked her for the spicy food. Xixi didn't reply her directly. But after that, we started to have spicy dishes. Honestly, it wasn't as spicy as we expected, that's probably here in Malaysia spicy food is everywhere!

In the picture, the pure veg dishes were shredded carrots, long cabbage, green leafy veggie青菜, soy sauce potato and raw seaweed. As for the meat dishes, we have the famous local duck blood cuisine血粑鸭, 1 fried pork, 1 steam fish, 1 stir fry meat with black fungus, 1 stir fry big red onions with bacon and 1 soup. This is our meal on the third day. This is actually much better than the first and second day after we complained that there wasn't enough meat for a table of 9 hungry tourists. On the first day, we even had to request for an extra egg dish cause the 12-year-old boy doesn't eat veggies. And we went to bed with a grumbling stomach. So on the second day, we tapao something along the way just in case we got hungry even after the 10 dishes meal.

You ordered 10 dishes for us, but then 10 of them are not really that delicious, one of our travel mates said we need quality food, not the quantity. Plus, every meal, we couldn't finish the whole thing, even with the 4 of us whom I think were the biggest eaters in the group. One more thing, every meal comes with some fruits served at last, in China there were so many local fruits that we haven't tried before, and yet every meal you serve us watermelons, sometimes with additional cantaloupe. On the street, there were many vendors selling Chinese persimmon, some unknown Chinese little blackberries, mandarins and many more. None of those showed up on our table. 

And don't get me started on breakfast, only two 5 star hotel served international breakfast buffet. As for the rest, I felt like I'm eating at a canteen. It was a huge disappointment.

An improved meal with more meat varieties than veg after a lot of complaints. 
This is a steamboat 火锅,  everyone likes the deep fried bread.

We were kinda bummed to see these menus on our table. Where are those hot steamy Chinese buns? Or the varieties of scrumptious dim sums (only available on 1st-day breakfast), or those 拉面 and 饺子 that we saw on tv? No. Not one of those that I hope for was served. We ate it anyway because hungry tummy can't say no to food.

Oh and they rarely serve plain water here, you either have hot tea or cold beer and cola. 

We didn't dare to buy much of the street foods cause we were concerned about their hygiene, you definitely don't wanna go looking for a toilet in the middle of a tour. My dad still had stomachache though on the last day because of the Korean bbq.

Even with their meat dishes, I can barely see any meat, they are either all fat or bones with little meat. Their poultries are so small. It's so skinny that I think I can finish one whole chicken by myself. Their fish is freshwater fish and has many bones, which makes it difficult for us to eat, some of them were not fresh and has a bad smell. As for their veggie dishes, mum found out that they didn't even put garlic in their stir fry veggie dishes. Just salt and water. 清淡to the max. Once we bought their so-called meatballs hot soup which is sold at every rest station. The meatballs have no meat at all, it tasted like flour. 

This is the only meal that we all agreed was delicious. This was our last lunch which we had it at a big restaurant in Wuhan. One lady told me that the last trip she went to China also like this. You know what, I don't think I'm gonna go back to China. 

Now you wonder why Chinese tourist like to travel to our country, they see all those big juicy meaty fresh seafood at our famous seafood restaurant, they must be like WHOA! Here, we rarely cheat on our ingredients, when we say fishball, there's fish in it. When we say fresh seafood, we caught it live from the tank. No 偷工减料. During my trip to China, I really missed my homeland sasau saunyuk rice, all pure meat.

Okay, enough with the food. Let's dive into their architecture.
The city part is pretty much the same here, only with more vibrant and creative ads. As for their residence especially towards the rural area, the Chinese don't like to paint their houses. Unlike us who made sure the whole exterior of the house is painted nicely, they prefer to leave their cement house bare like that, some paint only the front part, some with tiles. I asked Xiao Luo, our photographer why is that, she said that's how they live. 

Lastly, Chinese culture.
First, let's hear some interesting story. Have you heard of the term 土豪? It means filthy rich people. According to Xixi, many China Chinese became suddenly rich these few years. You see, they have a rule in China that each newborn will be given a piece of land, it is for them to do some farming or build a house for their family in the future. Recently, the Chinese government has been really vigorous in expanding their economy, they needed lands to build buildings for development and also tourism. So when the government wanted to take these land, they compensated the people for a HUGE sum of money. That's how these people become SUDDENLY rich, literally becoming rich in one night. Xixi said in one case, there was this couple who slept on that pile of money they received. These village folks have never seen so much money before their entire lives.

So what happens when these people got rich? They became arrogant, they think they can do whatever they want. That is why China tourists are famous for their bad behaviours. They spit wherever they want, even on nice indoor carpets, they jump queue, they spend like there's no tomorrow, they are ignorant basically. Xixi was really aware that we hate China tourists, even she herself thinks that as well. She said that China may have opened her door to the world, but the people's mindset is not yet fully open. 

That is so true of what our tour guide said. I mean look, they can't even close the damn door when they go to the toilet. My mum said she bump into a few heinies while in the toilet. Urgh! I really hope that they will become more civilised because even with a lot of first-class infrastructures built for them, without a first-class mind, I don't think they're gonna move forward much.

Talking about civilization, one thing I notice, there are a lot of motivational posters or banners posted everywhere, on the walls, on the sidewalk, on their bus stops, signboards everywhere! I guess that's how the government was trying to remind their people to be more ethical and civilized. 

An example of a digital signboard with motivational quotes at the crossroad of a busy road.

Seriously, these people, they were a lot of signs saying you cannot smoke at certain places, especially in the National Forest Park, what did they do? They smoke right under the signboard. One little mistake could start a fire in the jungle. It was really inappropriate.

Anyhow, despite some of the disappointments, I'm still very grateful to be here. I may not fall in love with their food or culture, but I definitely fell in love with the beauty of China, it was something you don't get to see anywhere in Malaysia. Xixi said, if we were there a week earlier, we're going to be 落汤鸡, means soaked in wet due to heavy rain. We wouldn't be able to see anything or capture nice clear pictures, especially at the bridge. One travel mate even came back for the second time just to get a clearer picture. Thank God so so so much that we didn't have to use our raincoats or umbrella. It was all bright and warm throughout the entire journey. Hallelujah, praise the Lord.

Each person is entitled to one calendar. This was the photo Xiao Luo picked for mine, four of us had the same background photo, mum said Xiao Luo should have picked a different background for each of us. It's kind of a bummer that they didn't print a family photo one. Now the calendars are placed in our own room, you know to be fair.

Those laminated photos cost RMB10 each. We bought 23 of them. We also bought the photo book which cost RMB 235. My brother bought a CD of our journey which cost RMB 200. So memorabilia souvenirs only cost us RMB 665 (Approx RM409). Parents say this is one in a lifetime opportunity wah, so must buy loh.

 It is amazing that how Xiao Luo and the team could come up with these things within A DAY! Imagine they have to process photos of 36 of us. They have to edit and print all the calendars, photos and books. There's nothing that China can't do.

They say first time go China must kena tipu one, it was true. Not only me, other travel mates also said the same thing. We've learnt our lesson, greed will only bring you more lost. Just don't trust people easily.

Alright, this marks the end of my trip to China. No more another post. Those who finish from part 1 till part 5, give yourself a pat on your back. I don't know if you're tired of reading it, but I definitely got tired of writing it. It really felt like an assignment.

Here's a cookie to reward your perseverance.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

9 Days 7 Night China Trip 中国武汉 - 张家界之旅 Part 5/5

Day Seven Monday 30/10/2017 Zhang Jia Jie > Yue Yang (张家界>岳阳)

Early breakfast at the same hotel, dropped our luggage on the tour bus, then off we went to our next destination, Yue Yang. It's time to leave the mystical fantasy land. But before that, Xixi brought us on another shopping trip. Today we're going to hear about China's valuable rock - Jade.

This salesman who looks like Lee Zhong Wei, is a BIG FAT ASS LIER!
I'll tell you in another post.

After spending 2 hours ++ listening to his bullshit, we were brought to another specialized shop selling Chinese Traditional Medicine. When we got there, everyone had a free leg spa!

It felt sooooo good immersing your poor exhausted feet in this hot herbal water after all those hiking and walking. Then each of us was assigned to one masseuse who gave us a good soothing massage. While enjoying the massage, we were introduced to some of their herbal products, the famous one being the Bao Fu Ling, everyone who returns from China will surely bring one of these back.

If you look up on the web, it says that this thing can cure many types of skin diseases. 
It has a nice minty smell and it really soothes the skin. We bought this from Xixi cause she said she got stocks and it's relatively cheaper compared to the ones in stores. RMB 250 (Approx RM154)

Here's another interesting story. a few Chinese medicine practitioner were invited to give us a free consultation. We were given a middle-aged guy who claimed himself to be some important people in the Chinese medicinal world. After he read my mum's pulse (把脉), with a serious look, he said that my mum's body has a lot of problems, there are many toxic inside and it needed to be healed immediately. 

To further investigate, we were brought to another more private room, he performed some type of Qi Gong, 气功 on my mother. He was like exerting a surmountable of energy on my mother's belly without touching her. Then he sprayed some yellow liquid on her belly. The part of the skin near her liver turned red. He said that's toxic just came. We were both shocked to see that. At first, I couldn't believe it, so her performed the Qi Gong on me, I felt electricity running on my skin. It's unbelievable.

After explaining all the complications that my mother will have, he then proposed that mum should start taking Chinese medicine. He said the thing costs RM3000++, then he said the treatment requires 3 months. So both mum and I were thinking really hard. My anxiety kicked in, so I convinced her to buy. When we were settling the payment using our debit card, the salesgirl said the total amount was RM9000++. 

We were like... WHOA WHOA WHOA, wait a minute mister, you said it's RM3000++???!!! He replied, yeah, RM3000 is ONLY for 1 month. 

I felt like we were being cheated once again. Earlier, he didn't mention anything about RM3000++ has to times THREE! He only mentioned RM3000, 3 months. This guy PURPOSELY LED us into believing that that is the amount we have to pay. Mum straight away rejected him and demanded money back. They kept on persuading us that we need to take care of our health, it is important blah blah blah. Then they tried to convince us to take one month first. 

The sales team saw that we didn't budge, the man left without checking my pulse which he promised to do so earlier. That's right, this is how realistic people can be. That is how we almost got tricked again.

Alright, moving on. Before we went for lunch, we visited a studio to watch something fascinating - Traditional Chinese Shadow Play (皮影戏). In Malaysia, we have our own version called Wayang Kulit. It's pretty much the same concept, only different style and culture.

The entire thing was performed by one person only, how amazing was that?!
One keh poh aunty even went to the back to have a peek. 

Lunch time! We had Korean BBQ, but the meat portion was very little and the place wasn't really hygienic, my dad had diarrhoea after the meal.  Thumbs down.

Resumed our journey for another 4 hours. Our journey back to Wuhan the big city took 2 days. This was practically our view, vast yellowish plantations. It's time to 上车睡觉,下车尿尿 again. At last, we reached Yue Yang, had dinner and strolled at a park called Ba Ling Guang Chang, 巴陵广场.

An interesting sight you don't get to see in Malaysia, the elderlies gathered together watching a drama out in the cold. That's how they spend time here.

It was really cold at night, our driver said this is nothing compared to winter, they had to wear up to 3 layers of pants. Suddenly I'm grateful to be living in Malaysia. 

Something eye-catching. Behind this humongous statue is a lake, that's why it was so cold. 

This is a huge park. Despite the frigidity, these elderlies like to come out and dance in a group. There were many different groups dancing to upbeat music, the locals call it 广场舞. Good for them. There were also many dog owners who brought along their dogs for a saunter at night. Dog breeds here were enormous and fluffy! I forgot to take pictures!

Good night.

Day Eight Tuesday 31/10/2017 Yue Yang > Wu Han (岳阳 > 武汉) Last Day

Waking up to this amazing view on our last stay in China. This was the only day I manage to capture a morning picture, that's because it's the only morning that we didn't have to wake up so early. After making sure all our stuff are packed, we had our last breakfast and continued our bus ride all the way back to the big city Wuhan. Around 3 hours.

In the itinerary, it says that we have a visitation to the Revolution Memorial Hall (辛亥革命纪念馆), which exhibits the historical events of the 1911 revolution, but Xixi said we didn't have much time so let's just take some pictures in the park. So here it is. 

After 走马看花 around, it's makan time!

Our last lunch, it was the only lunch we were all fully satisfied. 
I'll tell you more about food in another post.

Then, we headed to another park, it's called Dayu Mythology Park, 大禹神话园. A beautiful park with nice landscape and a lot of Chinese mythology sculpture, it wasn't hot despite the sun, so yea, we got to relax a bit there. Just walked around and enjoyed all the big little things around us. I really like the willow tree.

These two were my favourite shots. Apparently, my phone camera only works well during daytime under the broad daylight. Photo credits to my brother after many failed attempts.

Can you see the bridge behind? That's a double-decker bridge. The upper deck is for cars whereas the lower deck is for trains. How cool is that?!

A magnificent statue of Da Yu, the Tamer of the Flood.

After the nice breezy promenade, we went to our final stop, Jiang Han Lu Shopping Street, 江汉路步行道.

It's a very long street with many different themes on each street. Some street sells food, some clothes, some wedding stuff. Price wise, above average. So nothing much to buy other than some titbits.

Last dinner before going to the airport. 

The guy wearing black is our driver, Mr Wang, we call him 王师傅, who had been driving us everywhere and making sure our luggage was on board. The short hair lady is our tour guide Xixi, who introduced us to every little thing about China. The last one, that is Mr Francis our tour leader, who kept us entertained throughout the trip as well as helping to count heads all the time.

Wuhan new airport is so gigantic and the security was strict as fudge. My brother's stuff was confiscated, our belongings were checked twice, my expensive Chinese ointment was almost confiscated as well. It was just......urgh!

Bye bye China, till we meet again next time which I don't think it's gonna be anytime soon. By the time we reached KK it was already the next day 3am, that was day 9. And that's why you see a lot of trips like this 8 days 6 nights. At first, I couldn't understand how is it possible. Now I do. 

Tada! These are what we bought, mostly food. Thank God Hallelujah Praise the Lord, our luggage was not overweight. Some other travel mates had to add more kg. In Mandarin, we call this our 战利品, google translations says trophy which I think is incorrect. We so regretted that we didn't manage to grab any magnets, a typical vacation souvenirs. We were like, hey maybe we will have another shopping trip next. But we were wrong. Anyhow, we thought we bought enough to distribute these to our friends and relatives, again we were wrong. You see that green colour drink there? It's a famous Chinese brand cocktail drink named Rio, tastes like toilet cleaner.

Don't miss my China Trip Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

I think I'm gonna have to write a summary part of this entire trip.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

9 Days 7 Night China Trip 中国武汉 - 张家界之旅 Part 4/5

Trying to remember every details while I write everything down. Ok. Let's resume our journey.

Don't miss out Part 1   Part 2   Part 3  of my journey. 

Day Six Sunday 29/10/2017 Zhang Jia Jie (张家界)
Finally, a day that we didn't have to pack our luggage and wake up that early. Yummy buffet breakfast at the same hotel and commenced our day.

This is the second best breakfast after the first day. 5 star.

Then, Xixi said, let's go shopping again. This time we were taken to a tea shop. Just like the first shopping trip, we sat in a room and listen to a salesperson promoting his/her product. This time, we have a funny salesman who studies tea to introduce to us chinese tea. We learned a lot about different type of teas and their benefits. We ended up buying none cause it cost hundreds and thousands. The only tea we drank is a detox tea we bought regularly from guardian, RM50 tops.

While waiting for the uncle aunties to shop.

After that, Xixi took us to another shopping trip, this time, Chinese Silk.

Chinese sales girl demonstrated how smooth the silks were, did you know that silks have different grades? The higher the grades, the more expensive it is, boy these silks could cost a fortune. After the talk, the sales girl took out some see through silk panties, the aunties all went for that like a predator, just like when you are grabbing for something on sale at pasar malam. 

I asked one of my table mates, a rich aunty.
Me: Aunty you didn't buy (panties)?
Her husband: She doesn't need it cause she's not wearing it.
And we all laughed merrily. Funny uncle, I like him.

Lunch time!

After making sure all our tummies were filled, Xixi brought us to the most anticipated destination of this trip - GLASS BRIDGE! YES!!!

Let's hear some fun facts of this glass bridge before we look at the pictures. Located in Zhang Jia Jie National Forest Park (张家界国家森林公园), this bridge was designed by Israeli architect Haim Dotan, it is the world's longest and tallest glass bridge. These are the records the glass bridge holds.

World's longest glass bridge
World's tallest glass bridge
World's highest bungee jump platform
World's steepest zip line
World's largest open space cable surface suspension bridge
World's first bridge to use glass as main force structure
The first bridge to have smallest ratio of height and span of the main beam
The world's first large-span suspension bridge without wind-resistant cable
The world's first bridge using a variety of damping devices to curb vibration in different directions.

Thank God and China again, we didn't have to climb any mountain to reach the bridge, there were elevators for us weak tourist. The place was really crowded when we reach a there. So after wearing the glass protector or I called it the shoes clothes, we were allowed to enter the multi-record holder one of a kind glass bridge.

Tada! No words can describe how amazing this is. 

Parents having fun posing on the clear glass beneath them. I wasn't that brave.

There were guards who kept shoo-ing us like a chicken, kept reminding us our time limit, which was only 30 minute. Of course none of the tourist listen to him. As for me, I got panic attack once again, because of the guards noise, the overexcited tourists, the height, everything started to seem overwhelming for me. I couldn't bear it anymore so I hurriedly went to the other end the bridge by myself. It was terrifying. I couldn't stand on the clear glass, it was just too much for me. 

After Xixi did the head count, we proceeded to another thrilling journey. Before we entered the glass bridge, Xixi already warned us, if we think that we cannot go through thousands of flight of steep stairs starting from the bridge till the bottom of the canyon, and continue to walk for another hour or two foot journey, we can take the same route back, which is the elevator. Mum and I had given some thoughts about it cause we were afraid that we won't be able to make it. However, mum said let's give it a shot, after all we paid almost 4 grand each for this trip.

So Mr. Francis brought those who cannot make it back to the start, the rest followed Xixi to the other side. Hey, Adele's Hello is playing in my head now.
Hello from the other side......

Ok, I didn't take any picture here cause the stairs was really x1000 steep. One teeny tiny mistake would let you plunge to your death. The stairs were made of wood, there were really narrow, and really steep, it was hell for me. 

Imagine you're here overlooking the entire canyon, stepping on stairs made of wood only God knows how sturdy were they, clinging to the edge of the cliff, Scary much?! Some of these tourists didn't know the word DANGER, I saw them leaning their entire body against the handrail taking selfies, who knows when one of the nails will get loose and the whole thing collapse? And you wonder why there are so many deaths caused by selfies.

After that shivering experience, we finally got to stand on solid land. What portrayed before our eyes was something you only see in the movies. It was nature at its best. The tranquility of the canyon made me forget all about the scary encounter just now. Both side of the precipitous rocks were covered in luscious floras and faunas. 

Along the journey, you can see many signboards like this, some describing what are you seeing, this signboard teaches you the local language Tu Jia 土家语, our tour guide Xixi's ethnic language.

Along the journey, you can see a lot of fairy tale like waterfalls, majestic caves and and cliffs and this crystal clear canal that I couldn't take my eyes off. Pure heaven.

This canal started as a stream of crystal clear water, as it gets wider and deeper, this beautiful translucent turquoise colour slowly emerged. Oh Mother nature, how great thou art ?! It felt so surreal being in this place. You really have to come here before you die.

Finally, we got to a jeti where we can finally sit down and enjoy our boat ride. We were the last of our group. Dad reached the dock long time ago. My miserable look after a loooooooong exhausting yet fulfilling foot journey. I gave myself a pat at the back for making it all the way through, and because Xixi told us that there's no way back. The boat ride was equally amazing! 

After 3-4 hours of sightseeing, we finally finished the whole thing. 3-4 hours might sound long, but we really felt like we rushed through it. We could have stayed a bit longer and taken more pictures if we weren't worrying about the others waiting for us. Anyway, as we reached the end of journey, we were welcomed by fragrant smells of roasted nuts and all sorts of local delicacies at the exit. So I took advantages of the free samples to fill my tummy up. 

Those who didn't make it, I say, great loss. Plus, you've already paid for this route. According to a china website (not really sure if it's official), we were taking the B route, which includes the elevator to go up the the glass bridge, the glass bridge, the grand canyon, the boat ride and the slide. The slide here I'm assuming was the flying fox that we didn't go for because the queue was damn long. The whole thing cost RMB 243 (approx RM 150)

After freshening up ourselves, it's time to replenish our energy.

We were taken to a shopping street called Xi Bu Street (溪布民俗商业街) where varieties of things from insect snacks to overpriced local crafts were sold. It was a really vibrant street. We bought some rice nuts. Then we were off to watch some show again.

After harbouring some souvenirs, it's time for some local shows again. This show is called Misty Rain Zhang Jia Jie Show (烟雨张家界歌舞秀). Available twice every night at Huanglongdong Hallelujah Concert Hall, this musical concert tells the daily lives of local folks at Zhang Jia Jie, entrance fee is RMB 198 each. (Approx RM 122).

While we were waiting outside of the building for Xixi to get our tickets, we were shaking hard. I didn't know it can be sooooo cold at night,  one small breeze can make you shiver right down to your bone, it was literally spine chilling. Anyway, we were here not to see some scary show, instead, our eyes were feasted with these wonderful local talents' performance. 

This was one of my favorite. Those long stretchy strips represent strings that are used by the local girls to weave clothings. Creative!

This is also interesting, this dance was based on their culture of wrapping their heads. According to the locals, the tighter and higher they can wrap the long sash around their head, the better it is, or something like that. I couldn't remember all the stories Xixi told us in the bus.

There was some jaw dropping acrobatics performance told in the form of love story and they was also a funny traditional proposal sketch where the emcee invited some volunteers to be the groom. All of these amazing performances made me totally forget the tiredness from the afternoon walk.

Here ends day six.  

Continue to discover China Zhang Jia Jie through my lens in Part 5, the final part.