Category Archives: Travel Adventures

Summer 2015 – VI

Fukuoka – Nagasaki – Kumamoto (July 18th – July 23rd 2015)

Our «Beetle» ferryboat transferred us from Korea to Japan in an exciting and safe manner. This was something new for us to experience, a ferryboat that «flies like a fairy» over the shared seas. The biggest waves happened however at the very departure at Busan, when we realised why the safety belts really were necessary to have on. But it was fun – we are now both generally used to be on board, so we took this as a simulation of a «perfect storm set on pause».:)

Fukuoka - Beetle Ferry (Fairy)
Fukuoka – Beetle Ferry (Fairy)

Fukuoka (福岡welcomed us in a beautiful sunset and Kyushu`s (third biggest Japane island) tropic temperature called for aclimatization. We took a bus («wrong side» in the traffic again), listened to the relaxed bus driver talking non stop to his passengers on a mike, calmly, friendly, like he just needs someone to talk to, that is, to listen to his monologue. Every sentence was ending something like «massss» or «desss» and it seemed like he was saying «eeeh, this is where I went to school desss…», «now we turn, hold to your seats, here is a good restaurant to it masss»..Really interesting and completely different world! I mean, teenagers that look like anime characters and shower toilets with remote control on a side and all that stuff (->check our other post about funny signs and photos). It is like being in a movie!

We soon learned that Fukuoka is a really easy, relaxed place and seems to still be somewhere in the 90-ties; old local trains, telephone boots, like they really are in no hurry to catch up with the rest of the hi-tech buzz and finishing stuff yesterday-attitude. It was actually so cool to sit on the SOFA (!) in the local vagons, floor and walls covered in wood and looking at the passengers that talk to each other or reading books – paper covered, real books! Good old life! A really big Japanese bow to Fukuoka who takes its time, really. People using mobile phones while transporting were a minority in these trains. By the way, everyone seems to be really tidy and has his/her own style, that sometimes might work out and sometimes not, but at least they have an enduring attitude to carry out their fashion choice. Moving on the seat to make place for others, not talking on the phone when surrounded by people, thousands of «thanks» («arigato gozaimas») and kind bows (event foreigners bow to each other when they meet in the street, it is contageous:), civilized behaviour and smiles make everyone very comfortable when in public. This is a developed country and that is shown in every corner.

Fukuoka - Yatai!
Fukuoka – Yatai!

In Fukuoka we ate perfect udon noodles in a traditional, low table, restaurant, visited Tochoji Temple with the biggest Buddha statue in Japan and went through the «Hell of Buddhism» under this 10 m statue until we finally saw the light, purified and blessed. Shofukuji Temple was a place with a beautiful garden where we took some time and Kjartan made some really nice photos of local dragonflies (two black males trying to conquer one red girl). We had unusual matcha (green tea) icecream and rested our eyes on an old wooden temple. Following advices from our tourist book, we took a metro to the old Hakata (other name for Fukuoka, previously separated city) castle, where we firstly hid from the big rain shower in a nearby cafe and then took a good walk through the area that was previously castle and now a nice park with lake.

Fukuoka - Old Castle Lake
Fukuoka – Old Castle Lake

Visiting Fukuoka cannot pass without having a dinner at yatai (movable food tents), says our book. We decided to first spend 45 minutes in the onsen (spa) close to the place we stayed and then head head back to the centre and eat at yatai. So we did that. Feeling rested, warm and pleasant due to the healing onsen waters, we had ramen noodles, sake, dumplings, grill-skewers and beer together with bunch of locals and tourists, got some nice tips about food and spoke our mastered broken- Japanese. Haha- it is so funny when everyone is friendly and everyone wants to talk but the only thing that is missing is ability to speak one language that everyone involved is familiar with!:) In that way we were taken by mistake as a 4 member family at the onseni hotel that need to pay 10,100.00 yen for overnight stay, when we got there to book an one-hour-bath! Jeez:) We got lots of bowing and «gomen nasai» (aplogize) after that. The girl working there aplogized like 20 times in tiny winy voice and bowed 200 times as she took tiny winy steps in front of us, smiling all the time. 🙂

Nagasaki - Harbour
Nagasaki – Harbour

Our next stop was Nagasaki (长崎). The green (montains) and blue (sea) harbour that survived a disaster 70 years ago, but has kept its open and welcoming attitude. We saw many foreigners living here, following the steps of Portugese that first internationalized Nagasaki back in 16th century!

Nagasaki - Street car (Tram)
Nagasaki – Street car (Tram)

We took traditional manually driven trams, called streetcars and dating back to 1911, to important and lecturing historical sites: The Atomic Bomb Museum, Peace Park and Glover Garden and learned a lot about Nagasaki`s past. The past before and after the bomb; it is really hard to shake off the feeling of a sudden catastrophe that once erased everything in this place in three seconds! And now…it is simply beautiful and green and blue and peaceful. Do take a walk to the Peace Park; it promotes harmony and best conflict solutions by avoiding nuclear weapons and their disastreous consequences. The Museum also gives good lectures on both history, health and physics topics.

Nagasaki - Peace Park
Nagasaki – Peace Park

We stayed in this nice place for two days and then had to make a further plans that finally include our JR Pass tickets purchased earlier. We use these a lot now and will last us 7 days. Yesterday (July 22nd) we arrived to Kumamoto (熊本) and saw the old castle (the third most popular in Japan) dating back to 16th century. But before we could even enter this magnificent wooden royal building, we were stopped by royals! Ah, so many guys tried to stop us and tell us something and we thought they were guides that vibe money loaded tourists! And besides «VIP» they said no word of English. Finally one mentioned «Prince, princess!» and soon we had to stand in the line and welcome the prince and princess with the rest of the crowd. What a timing!

Kumamoto Castle - Prince and Princess visit
Kumamoto Castle – Prince and Princess Akishino

And now we are sitting on the fast train that will eventually take us to the smallest of the four big islands – Shikoku. A ryokan (Japanese guesthouse) is waiting for us by the end of the day and we plan to stay two days on this island before starting to explore the huge Honshu with all the famous cities: Kyoto, Osaka and finally Tokyo.

Kumamoto Castle- Samurai warriors in the rain
Kumamoto Castle- Samurai warriors in the rain

Summer 2015 – V

Beijing – Qingdao – Seoul (July 12th – July 18th 2015)

Beijing welcomed us with sun and a scorching heat > 40C. Our directions to the hostel were good. No difficulty to find even though it was located inside a Hutong area with narrow alleys. It was a cosy hostel, rooms where facing the yard (traditional Chinese “siheyuan” courtyard) which was a renovated Hutong with roof. Quite pratical for drying our laundry (finally washed and clean). Our first dinner was the traditional Beijing Duck, great restaurant in our street, then we had a stroll around the Qianmen area. It has changed a great deal, modern walking street full of fashion shops and souveniers for tourists. Several of the traditional Hutongs still stand, but most have been renovated a bit and clearly have higher standards than earlier. The area still has charm. Kids play and families are having their late night barbequed snacks with beer. The occasional card game can also be witnessed, the streets are well and living. It is good to see that good things stay the same.

Beijing - Card games in Hutongs
Beijing – Card games in Hutongs

Next day after booking a trip to wall, we headed for the Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Mausoleum of Mao. The Mausoleum seemed closed, but the Forbidden City was crowded, hot and noisy. It very different to visit in the summer in holiday season compared to the winter out of season. It is beautiful regardless, but with so many tourists and heat, several places felt cramped. Wintertime is recommended!

Beijing - Crowded Forbidden City
Beijing – Crowded Forbidden City
Beijing - Forbidden City
Beijing – Forbidden City
Beijing - Forbidden City - Tranquility can be found even during high season
Beijing – Forbidden City – Tranquility can be found even during high season

Beijing has several large gardens and palaces. We decided to go to two of these, the Old Summer Palace (Yuanming Yuan) and the Summer Palace (Yiheyuan). Both are easy to access by Metro now and both beatiful. However, the (New) Summer Palace is clearly the best. It has several large large lakes with causeways lined with trees and hanging leaves. It is very peaceful and you can see people fishing and even swimming at some locations. Take good shoes if you plan to walk around the lakes, the park is huge.

Beijing - Yuanming Yuan
Beijing – Yuanming Yuan
Beijing - Yiheyuan
Beijing – Yiheyuan

On the way back we tracked down the location where we met 9 years ago! The “Feiying” Youth Hostel had now changed and become a business hotel. The neighbourhood was not changed much so we recognized the sights. Very special!

Back at Qianmen we met a friend who took us to a Laoshe Tea House. It was about closing time, but we still managed to get some excellent tea before heading back to our hostel.

You can’t go to Beijing without taking a hike at The Great Wall of China. At the hostel some backpackers had just come back from the Jinshanling – Simatai hike and were telling us it was great. We agreed saying we did that almost 10 years ago 🙂 This time we took an advice from friends from Fujian and went to Mutianyu. Something to note is that even though the trip is slightly cheaper, you will likely not manage to walk the whole stretch including the stairs up to the wall, unless you take the cable car. Time on the wall is about 3 hours before you have to head back to the lunch and bus ride back. When including the cable car ticket, this trip is the most expensive one, but it is very special experience. Towers up to 23 are renovated. However past the tower no. 23 you can see old parts that are untouched. The wall is overgrown with trees, bushes and has only narrow paths  that are walkeable. In the summer it is not easy to keep the pace up to reach the remote towers, as the ascent is straight up the mountain, but the reward is great when you gaze down the mountain on the “ants” walking below. Only few tourists bother to go beyond tower 23 when coming with a tourist bus, but we did meet a few that had hiked a couple of hours from the other side of the mountain. With more time and devotion, going on longer hikes and stops in villages on the way is clearly possible.

Mutianyu - Great Wall of China
Mutianyu – Great Wall of China
Mutianyu - Great Wall of China
Mutianyu – Great Wall of China

With sore feet and after the long walk whole day a traditional Beijing Hot Pot can’t be recommended enough. It gives you both strength and nutrition and if you are not careful with the spices, it gives yourself and the whole restaurant an itch and a cough. Our neigbouring table, maybe from Sichuan, got the comment “What kind of fuel did you put in that burner?” (even the waiter had to run out on the street to clear her throat!) 🙂

Next stop  Qingdao, the home of Tsingtao beer and a port city. We were welcomed by a local friend Wenwen, that Dragana knows from Oslo.  After checking in, we had an excellent lunch/dinner with all local specialities and of course fresh unrefined Tsingtao beer in a pitcher. Later we walked through the night market (夜市) and walking street Taidong, looked in shops and had some iced coffee. Refreshing! Qingdao is one of the smaller cities we visited, has around 10 million people and a bit too much smog in the air, but all in all is quite a cosy place.

Next day we grabbed some breakfast and headed for the airport. The female taxi driver was very cool and had decorated the car with stitching. You have to be pretty tough to drive in a city like Qingdao, the traffic is terrible and there is no metro yet (to be finished in 2017).

Seoul welcomed us after a short double decker plane trip from Qingdao. This gigantic city has more than 10 million people + another 15 million in the suburbs and surroundings. Added with the media coverage of MERS outbreak recently, we were careful. Very few people wore masks and it seemed like people where quite relaxed now. Hand sanitizers placed around entries/exits of shopping centers and free masks in the hotel showed that the situation was taken seriously.

As we arrived quite late, our options for food were limited, but with the help of some local girls in the street, we found a great place for Korean soup and something similar to Hot Pot. Clay pot on a gas burner with well boiled meat, vegetables and assortments of kimchi served with Korean rice wine. Excellent! It was fun using the language in Seoul – it turned out that it went much easier once we used Chinese instead of English! The city namely speaks Korean, Japanese and Chinese.

The next day we headed for the palaces and the folk museum. Not so crowded, but very peaceful and serene instead. The Folk Museum was great, much information in English and with multimedia shows depicting peoples lives and livelihood in different seasons and times. The South Korean culture is quite specific. With later influences from China and Japan, it has an origins from long lasting and quite stable monarkies that were established by the tribes that settled and divded the land. The similarities to clothes, tools and similar used in Balkans, Russia and even by Norwegian indegenous people is striking.

Seoul - Changdeokgung
Seoul – Changdeokgung

The evening was spent in the more modern areas of Seoul, the Damdaeamun clothes market and Dootsa shopping mall. Contrasts are large in Seoul as well. Climate is pleasant, breeze from the sea and quite green with parks and well kept palaces.

Seoul - Dongdaemun area
Seoul – Dongdaemun area

Today we boarded the KTX (Korean Train Express) to Busan where our flying ferry is waiting to take us to Japan! It speeds through whole South Korea in only 2 hours and 30 minutes, impressive. There is not a city without some adventure. Kjartan read about the Yongtsan Electronic Market the day before. It is said to be as large as the electronic market in Hong Kong and Tokyo combined and was rebuilt due to the construction of new KTX lines (2004). Seoul has several train stations and it seemed quite logical that our train was to depart from Yongtsan station. We arrived in very good time and yes, there are KTX trains leaving from here. However not OUR KTX train, that one leaves from Seoul Station. Ok, jump in another taxi and head for the Seoul train station. At least we got to see the Yongtsan Electronic Market in the end 🙂

Next stop Fukuoka, Japan!

On the way to Japan!
On the way to Japan!
Fukuoka - The flying Beetle
Fukuoka – The flying Beetle

Summer 2015 – IV

Shanghai – Nanjing (July 7th – July 12th 2015)

Thanks to our friend’s help, we could easily pick up the train tickets Xiamen-Shanghai. During the trip through China, we have widely enjoyed the benefits of WeChat application (微信) functions: if you have a friend with Chinese mobile phone and WeChat account, he/she can pay the ticket online for you and you can give them money afterwards! It was enough to show passport and a picture of a receipt and many train tickets were soon in our hands! In this way, we have also just picked up our Beijing-Qingdao tickets for 15th of July, while we wait for the train to Beijing on 12th! Cool!:) Not to mention that the huge Nanjing train station, where we are now, seems even bigger as the typhoon stopped many trains towards the south and east and it is only like a million people around us! That’s nothing! 🙂

We arrived to Shanghai on 7th of July, and got on a metro with our new purple SH metro card. We found our hostel pretty easy and were happy that day although the room was terrible. Luckily we do not stay too much in rooms and the guys in the hostel were ok, so it went ok in the end.

The first evening we had a spicy Sichuan dish for dinner in a restaurant nearby and immediately headed for the famous Bund (外滩). We took some really nice photos of the area, both banks of The Huangpu River and curious, veeery curious, people passing by.:)

Shanghai - Pearl Tower in the fog
Shanghai – Pearl Tower in the fog

We strolled down the walking street, Nanjing Road (南京路) before heading back. The next day we started with a lazy morning and decided that it is time to slow down a bit. The typhon news started to arrive and we gave up on Hangzhou and Suzhou and made plans for Nanjing instead – not really being aware how big the typhoon will be and how lucky we will feel afterwards!

After breakfast we walked all the way to The Bund again and met The Pearl Tower (东方明珠) in its morning outfit. This famous landmark of Shanghai broadcasts TV programme that one can watch directly in the SH metro trains. We also visited beautiful and traditional Yu Yuan Garden, felt the atmosphere of an old Shanghai and had a nice rest in this place that is a real food for the soul…

Shanghai - Yu Yuan garden
Shanghai – Yu Yuan garden

Afterwards we also experienced the first raindrops, while sitting on the bench on The People’s Square, an area neatly arranged by the city government.

Shanghai - People's Square
Shanghai – People’s Square

This is my (Dragana’s) third short visit to Shanghai and I can say that every time is so different and unique, it’s like coming to three completely different cities. Not only due to the ten year change and development but the city size! It is huuuge and it takes ages to see everything.

Shanghai - Contrasts are everywhere
Shanghai – Contrasts are everywhere

Shanghai is a city of contrasts. As you stand next to an old temple with the red dragon-shaped roof, a growing skyscraper from the temple’s neighbourhood is unavoidable on that picture you are taking. Old, traditional spirit is easily being mixed with high-tech places, full of neon lights, “dum dum” music and those shopping centres where people stand in line to open one of those little boxes on the sale. Ok, they look stylish, but what is in them? We barely managed to see some pieces of fake jewelry. As people in Serbia say, “even the god loves it if it is for free”. Or on sale, I would guess.

We went through The Bund Sightseeing Tunnel (fun for kids mostly) to reach the modern Pudong area and take photos of The Pearl Tower in the night fog. It was like a dream! Really nice experience. We could not climb the tower as it disappeared with its neighbouring sisters in fog and clouds, but went to a good and cosy Shanghai history museum which is located at the bottom of the tower and got an evening history lecture.
We would also like to recommend one of the Lanzhou noodles places, where Chinese muslims make huge portions of a various delicious food and you can see them as they “la mian” – strech dough and make noodle soup. I remember watching this in Putian-flashbacks from the previous life in China.:)

Our next stop was Nanjing and it was a pearl to discover. The green capital of Jiangsu province and an ancient capital of modern China that housed six Chinese dynasties!! We were so happy with this place! Our friend Charlie took really good care of us every minute and we are looking forward to welcome him and his family in Norway.

Nanjing - Gate to Old Town
Nanjing – Gate to Old Town

Two days in lovely Nanjing went fast but we managed to see ancient gates in the city, entrance to the Confucious museum, old city area where we had our first stinky tofu (臭豆腐)experience (it is really true: the stinkier this soya cheese is, the more tasty it gets!) and modern night-life area 1912 (the year of founding of the first China Republic).


K&D – First time stinky tofu experience

Nanjing - 1912
Nanjing – 1912

The next day we spent hours in a big Nanjing museum which we absolutely recommend as it gives a thourough lecture on Chinese and Jiangsu history. If you wonder which city to visit in China and want to know more about its culture and history, Nanjing is number 2 place to go (after Xi’an, the first capital ever, previously known as Chang’an). Nanjing is the city of green: bridges and roads are literally covered by green plants and leaves and as we go through and leave Jiangsu province now, the green is saying hi to our 310km/h bullet train.

Nanjing - Traditional restaurant
Nanjing – Traditional restaurant

Our next stop, Beijing, promises sunny weather and we hope that our friends in the south and eastern provinces will soon experience the same.

Go away, typhoon, go away! k&d

Summer 2015 – III

(In the meantime – July 10th 2015)

Hello from Nanjing! We just managed to skip the typhoon that is coming for a visit in Zhejiang province, riding in a bullet train at a speed of 306  km/h!:)

k&d Fast Life in China
k&d Fast Life in China

Arrived here today with winds in our back in the afternoon and are already full of positive impressions from this ancient Chinese capital!

Stay tuned and in the meantime here come some photos of good old Chinglish and other funny signs:D

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Summer 2015 – II

Xiamen – Putian – Xiamen (July 2nd – July 7th 2015)

After arriving at Xiamen train station, the adventure to find the bus to Putian is beginning. It was raining so people were quite nervous and running here and there. We easily found the way to the bus-station by crossing a bridge. Not exactly sure where to buy the tickets (on board or at the counter), we had to go back to the station and line up in the queue. With tickets in our hands again we were told to hurry. We crossed the bridge to get on the bus, but where was the bus? It was not there, so again we ran back to the station. Asking some people it seemed we where on the right way. No, wrong again. Asking here and there we finally found out that the tickets was for the “dongche” (bullet-train) and we had missed it! Bullet train line in Fujian was something new to us, China is developing very fast. Again line up in a different queue to change tickets, no problem. This time we had good time to find the terminal and we where first in line when it was time to check in. Standing in the line was like getting ready to a race. Clock counting down and guard asking to check if machine works. Red light, no, wait WAIT, the guard is shouting. Now, hurry, try again, green, lets go!

Dongche - Bullet train)
Dongche – (Bullet train)

Xiamen to Putian is close, it was a smooth ride in around 200 km/h. Once there we were welcomed by friends, Martha and Faye, who helped us with the hotel and treated us with an excellent dinner together with the whole family of three generations!

The next day we went by ferry to the Meizhou Island. Of course, the ATM did not work on the mainland, but there was plenty on the island! To make sure things should go smooth this is where we headed first. However, it turns out most banks and ATM, even with Visa and Mastercard written on them, do not work with foreign Visa or Mastercards. The machine just entered maintenance mode and did a reboot (windows sounds and all)! All the machines we tried “went to sleep”, so guess we crashed down the whole island`s ATM system! 🙂 Perfect, not enough money and where to get it? Friends stepped in, pulled some connections (“guanxi”) and, after taking a one-motorbike-taxi-ride, we could borrow some RMB from – an island government official! Finally our sightseeing could begin!

Mazu Temple is a beautiful and lively sight, crested on the green hilltops and with lots of people who go here to pay their tribute, burning hell-money and insense.

Mazu Temple - Prayer
Mazu Temple – Prayer

An occasional monkey (dressed up person) gives the impression that this could be a scene from the Jungle book. Dragana explained that the monkey character is Sun Wukong, one of the heroes from the Chinese classic “The Journey to the West”.

On the very top, the Mazu goddess surveys the sea and protects the land from the typhoon. From the hill close to the big Mazu statue one can see not only colourfull dragon-shaped roof tops, but also islands belonging partly to Putian and partly to Taiwan!

Mazu goddess
Mazu goddess

A bag full of lyche (Putian fruit) protects us from hunger. Perfect refreshing snack in hot weather. Chinese ladies use a different method: everywhere we have gone so far, we say thousands of big and small, bright and dark-coloursed – umbrellas (!) that protect the people from the sun! Not parasols- umbrellas! Guess it is because many people simply run dramatically from the streets when it begins to rain, so “rain umbrellas” are here pretty much useless as we know them. 🙂

Back on the mainland we head for the downtown Putian. Much has changed here in 10 years. The little town (of 3 million people!!!) has become a city with skyskapers everywhere. The cozy walking streets with “holes in the walls” with excellent local food turned into a little highway and the modern fashion and electronic shops were lined up side by side. Some areas are still the same though; looking behind the modern facades and digging into the alleyways, we found the school where Dragana lived and worked 10 years ago!

Putian school visit
Putian school visit

Next day, the journey continues to Xiamen. This is a rapidly evolving, partly mainland (suburbs), partly island (the real thing) city that attracts quite a large amount of locals, as well as a few foreign tourists. You reach the island by going through the underwater tunnel. It has lots of Western colonial architecture and was a well known port for foreign trade at the time. Xiamen has managed to keep some of its old charm with traditional narrow alleys, street sellers only few steps from modern walking streets with modern fashion.

One can experience different things in this growing city; while those prefering “food for the soul” head for the Zhongshan park and enjoy singing of a gathered Chinese choir in one of the traditional resting places (亭子), qigong, taiji and dancing groups or simply close their eyes and drift, those hungry for a speedy speedy life, shoping and modernization stroll down the walking Zhongshan road and get one with the crowd! Our local friends thou showed us something alternative: we saw the old railway track and went through the very nice tunnel that used to be active many many years ago. Now this place is called the Railway Cultural Park and our hosts explain that the tourist seldom find this place by themselves. Worth visiting and experiencing!

Xiamen - Chinatown
Xiamen – Chinatown

Gulangyu Island, a short ferry ride from the city, has well preserved architecture, beautiful beaches and several museums. It is CROWDED, especially at the ferry, but well worth a visit to get out of the city for a day. Don’t forget to sample local fish soup and grilled sea food in the streets! We tried those huge grilled squids in the street, our faces became orange and all that stuff, but we ENJOYED it as we finished it all with a can of Qingdao beer! Healthy food can wait a bit! 😀

Gulangyu - Sunlight rock
Gulangyu – Sunlight rock

As you can see, we had a short, but lovely time in a beautiful green Fujian province! As we are writing this draft, we are sitting on another “dongche” bullet train (not bus!:), this time crossing Zhejiang province and heading to Shanghai. We got up at 04.45 am, and before this “dong che”, took a local Xiamen`s blue BRT bus (not train!) which is elevated above the city and takes in anyone who can push, be pushed, squished and breathe in a most crowded possible vehicle!

Alarms to Get Up in Time
Alarms to Get Up in Time
Fujian - Green and Hot
Fujian – Green and Hot

Well that`s it for now. We are staying in Shanghai for the next three days and plan also to visit the neighbouring Hangzhou and Suzhou.

Stay tuned, folks! k&d

Summer 2015 – I

Hong Kong – Shenzhen (June 30th – July 2nd 2015)

(Computer shop. Dragana bored; uses the golden opportunity to write a draft for the blog on this miracle of modern life called “smart phone”, while Kjartan has his IT blast.:)
Yes, it has been a long flight Oslo-Moscow-HK. In Moscow, during transfer, we had an interesting time-experience and would like to share a small tip: DO NOT believe your phone  when it is telling you the time between the flights; we were all right and lucky, but one man missed his flight as his phone obviously had not adjusted to the local time fast enough. Just look at the airport clock or something like that. That’s the tip.:-)

Hong Kong. The city of the “wrong” side of the traffic, three official languages, surprisingly good organization, tall buildings and trees and – lots of people! It welcomed us jet-lagged and mouth wide opened, amazed by the green hills that end up in clouds and all that super-tall architecture!

It was Sunday when we arrived-the day when migrant workers gather traditionally in the streets and enjoy the time together promoting their working services and rights. This was kind of the first thing we experienced – ending up in a crowd of bunch of jolly Indonesian ladies on the way to the hostel!

We asked and got a recommendation to try local noodles for lunch in the Jardine`s Bazaar. They were pretty good and we ate with locals, just like we prefer: “When in Rome…” or “入乡随俗”;-) When we asked for paper however, we heard in broken Mandarin “M’you zi!” No paper. Luckily, one kind older lady that works there gave us some from the kitchen cabinet (hope she was not scolded by her strick lady-boss!) and we learned a lesson. We guess that it is due to the virus threats recently, everyone takes responsibility for their own paper. Local supermarket sells tissues as a six pack and it is win-win for everyone as these are pretty cheap. You buy your tissues from them and just head for the restaurants that save their own paper and skip to have responsibility for your health by not transferring virus via restaurant napkins. Fair enough.

We realized that it was an absolute must for a power nap, after we thought/felt that evening was approaching at – 1 pm!
After the sleep everything felt much better and we had some dim-sum and watched the popular Symphony of the Light from the Victoria harbour. The show is a nice experience but one thing even nicer was the meeting of Jupiter and Venus in the sky that night! We were informed about this happening before and knew what was going on when we saw two particularly bright dots above the lights and skyscrapers.

KiD in Victoria Harbour
KiD in Victoria Harbour

After visiting The Boulevard of Stars (Asian Hollywood), we headed back to Causeway Bay and the Jardine`s Bazaar  (area close to the hostel), where we enjoyed an excellent shaomai in a small “hole in the wall”. We talked in Mandarin/broken Cantonese with the grandpas (“yeye”) working there to make them a bit more relaxed with these strange foreigners entering their cosy restaurant. And it WAS cosy: people were dropping by for take off and students and workers were enjoying their food after the hard working day.

The second day in Hong Kong started early, when we got our croissants from the local supermarket (“Wellcome” with two l’s:) and headed for the picturesque Hong Kong park. The place is famous for the newly weds, that is they can register their marrige on the top of the park hill. We got our tickets for the Victoria Peak tramway and started the adventure: climbing up the hill (太平山) and leaving the skyscraper tops below our feet, enjoying the view of all the green around us and -click click click- using our cameras, of course! We had our croissants and coffee (breakfast) once we arrived at the top and started the walk tour around the peak. Now, that was funny. There were almost no people when we started – at the end of the track! Turn the right, folks!:) It is really amazing how our organism is used to start from the left. Even the dogs, coming our direction with their jogging owners, were looking at us like there was something wrong since we walked on the left side of the road haha!

Lions Pavilion
Lions Pavilion

The forest is really something- it is hard to forget the smells and the sounds of cicada singing/fighting and the air really cleaned our lungs! And the trees – no, someone really needs to invent some technology for all the five senses! A big recommendation to experience the forest!!

Hong Kong - Birds perspective
Hong Kong – Birds perspective

Afterwards, we went to the hostel to fetch our suncream and then took the ferry to Lantau Island. Kjartan has been here before so he showed me the biggest Buddah statue in the world! Then we took the bus no. 2 to the Tai O fishing village where we had an excellent lunch at a seafood restaurant! We saw some “laowai” (non-Chinese) here as it is possible to get a B&B room on this genuine village! The restaurant we ate at had bunch of notes on the wall, written in many languages by satisfied customers that tried seafood grill prepared in the shells, covered with cheese, bacon, chilly papper and other yummy stuff! Really cool and excellent meal with had and left a Norwegian-Serbian-English-Chinese happy note on the wall!:)

The Big Buddha
The Big Buddha

Tai O. Little pearl among the hills. The evening was approaching as we walked down the narrow roads between the many huts, as the locals enjoyed with their families sitting in the street, watching series from outside as the door was open and it was so hot to sit inside, and slowly preparing for dinner. We got some local street snacks (Tai O sesame cookie) and these were really good!

Tai O
Tai O

By now we should mention that the draft is being written at Shenzhen North Station as we are waiting our high speed train (gao tie, 207 km/h!) to Fujian province!

We arrived here two days ago (June 30th) by crossing the border between HK and mainland China on foot! That was really cool experience:-) We even wanted to test e-check but it only work for locals. Thus we had to stand in the standard long queue with others and – even fill out arrival and departure card! Shocking haha, what were we thinking, getting into the country just like that!

KiD - Border Crossing
KiD – Border Crossing

Shenzhen is a city that develops 24/7. One can literally see the welding process with sparks falling in the middle of the night as the skyscrapers are growing! Really! Imagine that happening in Norway! The distances are large, as one can imagine in a city of a population of two Norways. So it is good to use metro when commuting, just like we did both in HK (“Octopus card”) and Shenzhen (colour metro card). The trains in both cities are very well organized, broad and with a good air-conditioning. The people however act differently in Shenzhen that in HK; they push in as soon as the train arrives, so be ready to push out!
Getting to the SZ hostel was a real adventure! We arrived close to the destination around 4pm, rang them few times, made people around ring them few times, went left, right, right again, back to where we started, then right, right again, back again and straight forward, then we found the Rainbow bridge, we crossed the bridge, went left, some guard talked with the hostel on the phone, then went straight, then the guard called us back apologizing for sending us off in the wrong direction, then we went back to the Rainbow bridge and finally found Block A! All of that to discover that the 14 floor does not exist, so we took the elevator to the floor 15A (the between 13 and 15) with 20kg luggage on our back.

Elevator - Find nr 14!
Elevator – Find nr 14!

The hostel “Wanderer” truly lives up to its name- we wandered and wondered in 35 degrees (common temperature in HK and SZ this time of the year). The people working there did not know what “hostel bookers” (the site we had booked the room from) was, but we managed to get private dormitory accomodation with shared bathroom. The place was an improvisation of a hostel business- we definitely do not recommend this place, unless you speak the language or do not mind hostel workers being too casual with their guests (there was no key to the rooms, so I saw a hostel worker opening the door without knocking when one foreigner was in his underwear). Ask for the key otherwise.

The second day in Shenzhen went fast as we met our friends living in the city and spent hours commuting by the metro. We saw the Sea World, close to the harbour Shekougang (蛇口港), where they have colourful water shows in the evenings. Many bar and foreign restaurants are in this area as well. The place is located by the end of the orange metro line. Be aware that it might take a few hours from one side of the city to the other-by the metro which is quite new (a few years old!) and – extremely developed! We would like to thank our friend Cyprian for showing us around. 谢谢, Cy!:)

This blog entry is being published on the train Shenzhen-Xiamen. The plan is immediately to take a bus to Putian, a Fujian town where Dragana lived 10 years ago! Staying there for the next three days. Stay tuned.:) k&d


Summer 2015

*Updates here regularly*  (

Here we go! AsiaTrip is finally happening!

KandDinAsia (3)

After decades of dreaming, 5 years of planning – 5 weeks in 4 countries are waiting for us! Welcome to join us by following our blog, leaving comment in any language you prefer and give tips!

Travel Period: 27th of June – 2nd of August 2015

AsiaTrip project includes following destinations:

*Hong Kong


*South Korea



k&d promise to update you every 5th day at least as long as they have had enough of sleep and good enough Internet connection.:-)

Stay tuned and visit this link again in a few days!!:-)

k&d (*currently packing and taking plane tomorrow afternoon)

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Packed bags


*!!!* New story out now:

Rome. Time Travel in The Ethernal City

The afternoon sun blinds man in December.  People stand on the bridge that stretches itself over Foro Romano.  Smart phones and tablets click and store freshest memories that will be uploaded, shared and liked online. Eventually. When people are back home and finally manage to find some free time to “deal with the photos”.

And these stones here have all the time in the world. They remain equally peaceful as the crowd slowly moves away and checks out for the day.  The ruins understand, the nature understands it all. For people cannot last through centuries and endure wars, fire, destruction and restoration.  This place has seen many people coming and going: statesmen and wise men, soldiers and gladiators, building and destroying, some with the life charm and some forever in the other`s shadow…glorified and judged, sometimes feeling like that would last forever and – all of them now just a part of history, turned into good old dust.

“So much rush and worry that every day brings”, blows the Wind through the pillars of the Saturn`s Temple, “Yet…Just look at that sunset!” It flies over the everlasting stone blocks, columns, and remains of temples. The sun rays rest for a short time on the black markings and ancient inscriptions and then slowly turn off. The dusk has arrived.

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Just look at that sunset!

The echo of shoes, boots, high heels resonates through the busy roads as everyone is in a rush to do the last shopping before ending up in one of the cosy trattorias for dinner.  There are some retro ones. Some old footballers and car stickers on the 80ties cabinets, classic spirit bottles that collect the dust on the wall shelves – and walls full of memories. Feels like Cotugno might appear from a room in the back singing the good old Eurovision lyrics:

“L’Europa non è lontana…C’è una canzone italiana per voi…Insieme, unite, unite, Europe!”

And as the waiters dance around the tables, suggesting the specialty of the day (“tonight – ox tail”) and wine is poured into the glasses, everyone gets so warm in this cosy, cosy place. The evening drifts along and gives in for the night, but Rome is not sleeping.  No way.

Voo..olare ooo cantare oooo” – every evening around 2 am some happy man wakes up the whole city singing in the street as loud as he can. That is the way things are. Unless not sober, one never gets enough sleep in the Rome`s 1st quartieri.

The Wind moved to Colosseum. It levitates above the top floor and looks down on the peaceful corridors surrounded by darkness. It is not too long until the light of the new  day brings new visitors, new laughter and many amazed eyes and mouth that have so much to tell to each other! Like that is different than 20 centuries ago – people back then were equally excited to share interesting stories and gossips! The Wind remembers and shakes his head with a smile on his broad face – noisy crowd of some 50 000 souls sitting  in maenianum primum or secundum (depending on their society level, often decided by – fate), coming here to escape  everyday worries by watching someone else`s .

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Let the mass entertainment begin!

Someone brought lunch to share it with family – the games Ludi Romani will take up the whole day, one gets hungry in the meantime! One lady lost her bracelet, the other one comb. Maybe their souls were wondering afterwards along these corridors looking for them for a long time and calmed down only once they were found and put in that funny glass cabinet there in the corner. The Wind flies over all these interesting exhibits: heads that have fallen off the statues, old weapon and jewelry, pots and papyrus…and many stories written on the white boards: about the gladiators, slaves and heroes, their weapon, beasts that originated in another part of the world to fight with them here, processions and ceremonies…Yes, the ancient emperors had to keep their people, their voters entertained…and calm.

The sun of the new day is shining above the Titus` Arch and  the local seagulls spread their wings, free of the crowd below them. Here and there they swing to the side and lend on the ground, very often close to a coffee table full of crumbs from all those delicious leftovers…prosciutto pie with mozzarella, Sicilian arancini with rice, tomato and-mozzarella; mozzarella in this, mozzarella with that…Guess it really is not easy to hold on to one`s diet with all these mozzarella around!

With stomachs full, they manage to take off, just before the waiter`s cloth swung towards them. A bird cannot even eat in peace nowadays! These humans…They lift themselves even higher, and fly arrogantly over buzzing Circo Massimo and all that holiday spirit down there, wonderful sunny balconies and orange trees full of fruit along the roads…Oranges in the middle of winter. Amazing.

Winter Oranges
Winter Oranges

At the edge of the broad city park, standing proudly on the top of the hill, Villa Medici is trying to catch that amazing view of Vatican cupolas again. Now is not only the trees that stand in the way – there are people around, too many people. People with cameras and people in front of the cameras. Some of them preoccupied to make the best shot of the fountain, and some getting their best wedding picture made. Tough work. Move here, hold the bride. Smile. Really not easy, getting married today.

On the other side of the city, the Church of St. Peter looks back. White and golden, Vatican state is never lonely.  Row snakes that people made trying to get their entrance ticket and tourist guides doing the best they can to help both them and their agencies happen every day. No wonder. Time in Vatican seems captured once a soul finds itself surrounded by its columns, walls and buildings. The church interior, the Sistine Chapel sealing, Pietà vaticana that proudly wears Michelangelo`s signature engraved – this place is simply a world of its own…

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Guarding Colours of Vatican

After a daylong lecture on history and art, groups cross the border again and are back in Rome. The Tiberius flows peacefully under various bridges that have also witnessed many historical twists. Nearby one can hear voices and laughter coming from the hippy Trastevere where the good night life is a promise. Good drinks and food included, of course. It is hard to imagine that this is  one and the same city, concludes the Wind, that just a while ago swooshed through the Colosseum!

Further, much further, in the distance the magnificent Pantheon joins in shaping the city`s horizon.  That is the place where sunrays and snowflakes periodically descend through the hollow dome and lend on the ancient floor tiles. It seems like it is of no cruicial importance whether only one or many Gods are worshiped here. The temple/church feels sacred in any case. 

Pantheon Oculus
Pantheon Oculus

Its entrance has in the meantime turned its back to the South and from the Northeast  windows it greets the old friend: Fontana di Trevi. One of the richest architecture pieces in the city, thanks to the movie “Three Coins in the Fountain”. People stand in a line to execute the “must”- ritual:  only if one hits the fountain with the coin thrown with the right hand over the left shoulder, the return to Rome is secured. Otherwise…

The wind cannot stop wondering about the catch in the way people think; what are these prejudices and beliefs all about? Making life more misterious or simply – making it feel longer somehow? No, the Wind has no idea how it feels to wander for only a short time on this planet and – like that is not enough! – to be so imperfect! Nope. It decides instead to rise up even higher; it passes the hungry pidgeons on the way, flies over the clouds and stops at a point where a top of the Capitoline Hill and its church is but a tiny dot down below.

Rome – What is it talking about?

And then the magic happens. After a short quiet break, they start to arrive, all those voices and emotions that Rome has carried in itself for centuries are joining forces up in the height and telling their stories once more, asking the Wind to remember them. They are re-telling the legend about Romulus, Remus, she-wolf and the becoming; about the life of an extraordinary man, Leonardo da Vinci and his creative mind; about the 17th century wisdom hidden underground in the Capuchin Crypt; about the 135 Spanish steps built a century later; about the ancient harbour of Ostia Antica by the sea coast and Castel Sant` Angelo by the Tiber and it does not seem that this will stop any time soon…The Wind finally gets it and gives in – this time in deep respect. It is time to listen carefully.

Because these are the stories about the people that were here. The same imperfect, superstitious and worried people that made it all happen. Years in and years out, it was human lives that gave the soul to this ancient city. Not the nature, not the wind, nor the sunrays. They took care of the beauty. But the soul is man-made. That is what Rome is talking about. Just listen.

“La route des vins” or France is more than “just Paris”

So you have decided to see a bit more of France than “just” a Paris. Well, taking a car trip through this part of Europe, known for wines, champagne, cheese and excellent food in general, but also melodic language and accent, castles and its rich history – would be an unfogettable adventure! Whether you are on a honeymoon, wine trip or simply touristic explorer, this kind of voyage will give you so much – you might even have a time reference (e.g. It happened “before France” or “after France”).

So, where to start? I guess anywhere is just fine, but let`s try from the North. Normandie. Aka “Cradle of Liberty”. Beautiful cities of Fécamp, Honfleur and Bayeux allong the Normandic coast can provide you with lots of treat: from excellent local cuisine and famous calvados (apple brandy), unforgettable sights both in harbors and in the cities, where traditional wooden houses wait for you along the narrow pavement streets…to history memories left for the future generations. D-Day beaches and places are quiet today, but have a lot to say about the times before, so it is definitely best to book a trip with a guide that will vividly describe happenings along these shores. If you have not seen the movie “The Longest Day” or tv-series “Band of Brothers”, you better have a look at those before you visit these historical beaches to get the big picture.

Utah Beach – Lt. Richard Winters

 The city of Bayeux on the other hand hides one special historical treasure: almost 70 m long Tapestry that you can secretly enjoy in a well kept local museum and learn about relations between Normandy and England in 11th century. 

“Normans Bayeux” by Dan Koehl – Tapestry de Bayeux.

Having “croissant au beurre” from a local “boulangerie” might be an excellent idea for those that do not mind simple and cheaper breakfast: French croissants are heavy enough to keep you going through the morning and until lunch time you might have found yourself at your next destination: The Loire Valley (Vallée de la Loire) – the castle landscape in the middle of France!

So how in the world find the best out of numerous magnificent “chateaux de la Loire”? And again, wherever you end up – is just fine! One of the most popular ones are Le château de Chenonceau and The royal Château de Chambord (the biggest one in the valley).

Château de Chenonceau

While visiting Chenonceau, you might find yourself completely lost in the past for almost a whole day – wandering through the long corridors you will hear many interesting stories about the famous ladies in the French past that took special care of this amazing estate: Diane de Poitiers, Catherine de’ Medici and many others. While enjoying the atmosphere in one of the many rooms in this castle, you can have a look through the window and enjoy beautiful gardens that carry the names of these powerful women. The rich surroundings also include a labyrinth specially popular among the families with children!

Chambord on the other hand, has more to offer when it comes to architecture and art and, although not as furnished as Chenonceau, is famous for temporary exhibitions of modern artists that take place in many of its chambers.

Château de Chambord

And if you are one of those that dream of having a castle on their own, where one can enjoy some privacy (maybe write a book or compose a piece of music?), then The Château d’Azay-le-Rideau might be a good destination to take your real estate agent to. 🙂

Oh and not to forget! Here might be a good start to visit local vineyards and try one of the best wines from the valley! As you drive through peaceful country roads in these areas, you can enjoy tidy rows of vineyards, which might make you drop by and visit one of the cellars nearby.


Do that and you will not feel sorry, as tasting wine in cellars is not only testing by itself – it is listening about the adventure of wine production, it is putting your hand to take a picture (or head to have a look, if you a real enthusiast!) into one of the containers for grapes fermentation, it is smelling precious oak barrels and, finally, using all the five senses when tasting the product: LISTEN to the fizz from the glass, LOOK at the wine, SMELL the liquid, TOUCH it with the roof of your mouth and then you – TASTE it!

Wine Cellar – Oak Barrels

As you leave the Valley and drive further south, still immersed in all this beautiful and green nature, castles that say hello to you from the distance, peaceful alleys..your next destination might shake you a bit and make you completely awake: Bordeaux! The city of summer, fun, latest fashion, shopping and – wine, of course! It is strongly advisable to book a place to stay overnight way before you find yourself in a local tourist office, asking for the best tips to get around and booking a wine tour for the next day. Visiting Bordeaux brings a really nice balance after spending days in the nature further north, but if you already miss it, a nice wine tour with an English guide will take you back there – vineyards and wine chateaux (here meaning “cellars”, although some of them really look like castles!) where the famous red wine is produced, would provide you with more lectures on “judging” the quality or age of the precious liquid in your glass..

Many tourist agencies would also offer a picnic trip to a picturesque Saint-Émilion, where the Romans planted first vineyards way back in the 2nd century! It represents one of the principal red wine areas of Bordeaux along with the Médoc, Graves and Pomerol. As you listen to the stories about wine in this area, you can also have some fun, walking through and down the cozy cobblestone streets..just be careful where you step, specially if you happen to be in high heels! Namely, one of the popular corners in this town takes you mercilessly -downhill (and yes, cobblestones included!:-))  When you come back to Bordeaux around dinner time, you can rest your tired feet and enjoy local cuisine duck meat for example, with some of the wines you might have already tried in a cellar earlier in the day… 



Yes, nice to have some rest…but clock is also ticking! You need to pack your bags, fix GPS and head further – next destination: Burgundy! This would be a long ride, but you would love it!! Road will take you through colorful areas: peaceful meadows, green little hills and over bridges, castles in the distance, new-mown hay areas and vineyards, vineyard, vineyards…This long drive might end up in some nice Bourgogne village where you can rest again and make a plan for the tomorrow`s visit to wine cellars. One of these nice places is Saint-Amand-en-Puisaye – green and so peaceful that even deer run in the meadows!

The next day your wheels could take you to the picturesque Sancerre, famous for its white wine with the same name, but also an amazing hilltop view! So it is time to pay a visit to wine produces of famous red and white “Burgundies”. Here the hosts might join you with a toast and estate dogs will keep you extra entertained! 🙂


Finally the time has come for the region of the regions: if you have already decided to make a wine trip to France, you cannot skip Champagne! As your car wheels spin on the roads that go through meadows full of cute low grape trees, you might decide to start your Champagne adventure with Hautvillers – a beautiful and idyllic place where Don Perignon comes from. You can visit the local church and the grave there of this famous monk and read on the walls about an impressive birth of Champagne in the monastery cellars! After this you can pay a visit to many of the local champagne producers, visit their cellars and try the products they are so proud of and that are made by mixing different types of grapes: Chardonnay (Blanc de blanc), Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. And not only that – as your enjoy the tasty bubbles, you can listen to the story of the whole manufacturing process- the so called Méthode Champenoise . So next time you pop open a champagne bottle to match your “foie gras” (fattened duck/goose liver),  you will look at it from a completely different angle! 🙂


Unforgettable trip, you think to yourself, as you try to pack in the trunk all the precious French souvenirs and unwillingly prepare to leave the country. And yet, there is so much left to explore…You feel that this was just a small “bite” of a delicious French cake! However you will also find that this just acquired travel experience was a really useful step one in this part of the planet. It makes you motivated to travel more and further! Yet again, vivid landscapes that you have just left behind remind one to “carpe diem” – enjoy every day wherever you are, because nature,  so unique as it is, surely has so much to give us wherever we are!

Docek u Budimpesti 2008./2009.

Konacno sam dobila priliku da visegodisnji plan o provodjenju novogodisnjih praznika u madjarskoj prestonici sprovedem u delo. Dok sam se u Beogradu spremala za put i skupljala razne “tips and tricks”, dosla sam i do informacije da je u Budimpesti minus 3 stepena kao nasih minus 33 i da ne zaboravim najdeblju jaknu i najdeblje carape koje imam. Nisam neki meteoropata, pa sam bila ubedjena da mi minus ni malo nece pokvariti raspolozenje, ukoliko poslusam gorepomenute savete i dobro se “natrontam”.

Stigavsi u Budimpestu poslednjeg dana 2008. godine rano ujutru, docekani smo od strane Marije, vrhunskog madjarskog vodica koji i srpski jezik i istoriju drzi u malom prstu. U drustvu ove zanimljive dame, predivnog melodicnog glasa, krenuli smo u ranoranilacki obilazak Budimpeste, dok se cinilo da cela Evropa jos uvek spava (Tek je proslo osam sati!).Za pocetak smo prvo, bas kao u pesmi, posetili zavejani Trg heroja (Hosok Tere), a zatim i Budim, brdo Gelert i Citadelu. U medjuvremenu su se otvorili kafici i poslasticarnice, pa smo jurnuli na prve kafe i tople cokolade…


Docek nove godine se priblizio. Dok su polako prolazili zadnji sati u 2008. godini, hladna madjarska prestonica zvala nas je napolje. Stigli smo u centar desavanja – promenadu Vaci ulice, odmah se stopili sa gomilom ljudi i presli u drugu dimenziju….gde glavnu rec vode trube i prskalice….to je slika cija pozadina su maske i ludi sesiri…to je atmosfera ispunjena mirisom kuvanog vina sa cimetom, kestenja i pereca. Svet u malom nas okruzuje – Amerikanci, Evropljani, Azijati. Svi pricaju Jezikom Osmeha.

Debeli minus ne moze nista obrazima rumenim od vina. Gomila se sliva ka podemnim prolazu odakle ponovo izvire u drugom delu ulice…Smeje se i uglas peva improvizovanu “Jingle Bells” pesmicu, kojom ih je ispratio cika sa violinom. Reka ljudi polako tece ka poznatoj poslasticarnici Zerbo (Gerbaud)…Zure ljudi na parce torte, na toplu cokoladu ili koju casicu necega zestokog…da u drustvu dragih ljudi docekaju ponoc u lepom ambijentu…mladji su hrabriji – zastaju kod bine gde se cuje ostar zvuk rokenrola! Svi skacu u ujednacenom ritmu..uvezbana novogodisnja koreografija, u kojoj nema greske- gore-dole, pa u vozic…

Decje glavice strce iznad gomile – ovaj put oni su najvisi! Nasmejani sede na ramenima svojih tata i mama i osmatraju male ljude ispod…grcevito drze sarene trube u umotanim rucicama i pricaju na nekom, samo njima znanom jeziku….iz daljine nas sve pozdravlja ogromna okicena jelka..cini se da je vrh nestao negde u maglovitom nocnom nebu…Blizi se ponoc…

Zauzimamo sto u poslasticarnici. Grabim fotoaparat i u momentu kad otkuca ponoc shvatam da smo zaboravili da odbrojavamo zadnjih deset sekundi…nemojte nam zameriti, toliko toga se desava…kod nekoga na satu jos ima dva minuta do ponoci..neki se vec grle i zamisljaju prve zelje u novoj godini. Radost ispunjava vazduh, nada je opet tu…Sve sto se izdesavalo doci ce na svoje, sapuce nam…..Samo da je zdravlja…

Po dogovoru, autobus nas je sacekao na obliznjem mostu par sati kasnije da nas vrati u hotel. Dobro smo se naspavali i sutradan ustali vec oko osam sati.Prvog januara smo osvanuli u savrsenom turistickom duhu i prvo se (ovaj put odmorni) uputili ka Trgu heroja i obliznjem klizalistu,  a zatim i do zooloskog vrta. Pored gomile koza, konja, misica i zeceva, naisli smo i na deve, kucu slonova i africki muzej sa ogromnim zirafama, a posebno nas je odusevio cudesni vodeni svet.

Potom smo krenuli ponovo do Vaci ulice i to metroom, ali u dogovoru sa mojim saputnicima, ne smem da pisem o tome sta nas je zadesilo jer smo se vozili bez karte. 🙂 Uspeli smo sve da okrenemo na salu i da se utesimo specijalitetom za rucak. U blizini pesacke zone posetili smo restoran “For Sale”, za koji smo culi od jednog zemljaka u novogodisnjoj noci.”For Sale” je pravi etno restoran, u drvenom ambijentu sa polepljnim porukicama po zidovima i plafonu. Na podu je prostrta slama, a svaki sto ima ogromnu ciniju punu kikirikija, cije se ljuske bacaju po podu. Atmosfera je bila prava domaca, narucili smo tri razlicite vrste gulasa i napunili stomake.


Za subotu pre povratka bila je rezervisana predivna Sent Andreja – Szentedre, gde je veliki broj Srba ziveo u XVI veku. Marijina zanimljiva prica o proslosti srpskih velikana, trgovaca i prosvetitelja, poseta Marcipan muzeju, setanje po starim kaldrmama okupanim suncem, kupovina madjarske rakije “Palinke”…kao da nas je sve to vratilo daleko, daleko u proslost. U vecini radnji rade Madjari koji znaju da pozdrave na srpskom, iako je tamo sada preostalo samo pet srpskih porodica. Prodaju se vezovi, narodna nosnja, suveniri i kao da su dve kulture spojene u jednu.

Misli pune pozitivnih utisaka, torbe pune stvari…oci zeljne sna, ali osmesi su neumorni. Vracamo se nazad u Srbiju. Prepricavamo i razmenjujemo utiske, adrese, gledamo iznova i iznova slike i snimke u foto aparatima. U autobusu neko glasno kuka: “Ah, ko ce u ponedeljak na posao!” i jasno nam je da je bajka zavrsena. Bar do nekog sledeceg puta.