Makino the most of it
JD was invited to "Makino Play Park" the other day by a couple of his classmates. It was a 1½ drive into the countryside - a camping and animal petting area near a large lake.
Half of the park seemed to be still under construction, but JD and his friends enjoyed feeding and playing with the emus, donkeys, llamas, chickens, pigs and - especially - the rabbits.
Hike and Hotel
Yesterday, we took a trip out to CongMao Reservoir with two of JD's old schoolfriends and their parents. We hiked up a mountain collecting edible mushrooms and checking out the wildlife!
After an evening meal together Jiajia, JD and I drove on to a 5 star hotel for the night. Jiajia had secured some vouchers for three nights, at 10% of the usual price. So we slept well on the 20th floor (great views) and pigged out on the buffet breakfast this morning. We'll use our two additional nights later in the year.
Freeze a jolly good fellow
We spent an afternoon/evening in the countryside earlier this week, to celebrate May Day with friends' of friends who live there.
The village had a huge funfair area set up with a variety of activities and stalls. JD and his friend Guo Dinger spent over two hours in a big adventure playground. I had a wander round and was intrigued by the ice-cream seller [top right] who used liquid nitrogen to flash-freeze squirty whipped cream! Surprisingly tasty.
We left the park at 6pm and headed for the friends' home where we shared a barbecue on their balcony overlooking the village. Then a 40-minute drive back home, with JD asleep on the back seat!
It's all mine
We had a fun day our with out new friends - a family we originally met at our Secret Forest den 6 months ago - visiting a mountain area they enjoy going to and sharing lunch and dinner with them. Our combined four e-bike convoy made the 50km round trip without recharging and the rain held off, despite dark skies. JD loved digging a slate mine, we diverted a small stream, made walled "gardens", played frisbee and caught a frog. What more could you ask for on a day out?
Man 'tis pretty!
Yesterday, we went with friends to an island town on TangLangChuan (literally "Praying Mantis River") in the countryside, about an hour's drive away. We had home-cooked banquets with friends of our friends and took a pleasant afternoon walk down the riverside to the enormous DianChi Lake. Then, on to a farm where we pulled up fresh vegetables for the evening meal and annoyed a huge goose.
JD's favourite activity was fishing in the river with his new net. He managed to catch three little minnows. For me, it was nice to spend a little quiet time with the wife, with mobile phones turned off!
Paul Hider lives and works in Kunming (SW China) and regularly updates this blog about his life there.
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