Day 12 Xi'an - Pingyao & Qiao Compound
Success!! I have gotten the internet in this old style room to work!
Yes, we are in Pingyao. We left Xi'an in the midst of sprinkling rain, and arrived in the early afternoon in Taiyuan also to sprinkling rain. There was a minor moment of panic at the Taiyuan airport when there was no one to meet us, but after a few frantic phone calls, it just turned out that our guide was slightly late.
On the way to the hotel, we dropped by the Qiao Family Compound (乔家大院). Took some photos and froze my toes off. Though there was one humourous moment when my uncle was pulled into a photo by a random Chinese tourist, and then her entire tour group wanted in on the photo; so he ended up taking a picture with about twenty people. It's funny cuz it's usually the girls who are pulled into random photos with Chinese tourists because they're small, cute, sorta-Caucasian, and twins.
Our hotel is actually a reconstructed Ming/Qing era family compound in Pingyao, complete with a giant stone bed built into the wall. Looks clean enough; the heater and free internet makes up for a lot. A little small for three though (since the old style beds won't fit an adult sleeping with head toward the wall, my uncle is reduced to sleeping 'sideways', meaning I get to share my room with both kids instead of just one usually).
Dinner was hot pot at a local restaurant. The food was average (I think their menu items might have been a better choice). We did meet another Caucasian man there with three Asian children. Apparently he's a stock broker from Hong Kong who's originally from NYC. His wife is Japanese and the kids are half-Japanese; they're just done touring Beijing and on their way through to Xi'an. So my aunt & uncle had a conversation with him while the twins had fun clowning around with his kids.
Tomorrow apparently we're going to see another family compound... somewhere. I'd thought we were only going to be here overnight, but apparently we're going to be here for two nights. Oh well. I'll just have to deal. :-/
Note: Here and as well in Xi'an, I couldn't get connected to insanejournal first. But after I left for a few hours, such as for dinner, I was later able to use it just fine. I think the problem is just a routing issue. I am experiencing BGP updates in real time! *geeks out*
However this doesn't explain why I can't get google/gmail here in Pinyao when I could get that just fine in Xi'an...