On Tuesday, the 30th of December Anita and I had breakfast at Ocean's then went to the train station and boarded our train to Jinhua. During the trip I got a real local experience... anyone who is easily grossed out should skip to the end of this paragraph. While on the train I was sitting across from some locals and, in China, many of the locals have pretty much never seen a foreigner. So, you get a lot of stares and sometimes this is the result of them being kind of suspicious of you. In any case, this one guy was really trying to stare me down and I just stared right back... until he spit. Not on me, but on the floor in front of me. Now I knew this was a local custom beforehand so it didn't really put me off that much at first, but then... he dragged his foot through it and smeared it all over the floor!
Anyway, back to the story. We arrived in Jinhua and Kevin, my friend and former colleague, picked us up to go get lunch. After some pizza we went for a drive around town to see some of Kevin's favourite spots. First we went to an old traditional Chinese house which had a really nice view over the lake.
It also had a really dirty fish pond out front. Next we went to neighborhood full of houses which were built using refurbished remnants from old traditional buildings.
Many of them open their doors to visitors so that you can see the inside as well. A few even have museums with collections of cool artifacts and otherwise interesting stuff.
That night we went back to Kevin's and caught up a bit over a dinner of delicious hot pot. The next day we had a huge breakfast of French toast, potatoes, eggs, sausage, etc. Afterward, Kevin had to go to a gathering so he let me and Anita borrow is electric bike so we could take it up to Pointy Peak for a hike.
Later that day, Kevin and his wife, May weren't back yet so we had to leave without saying goodbye. We took a taxi to the train station and began our 15 hour journey back to Hong Kong. That night turned out to be quite uncomfortable because, even though we had nice beds on the train, the smoking area (yes, they actually allow people to smoke on the train!) was just a couple meters away from us... Did I mention that smoking is endemic in China? I'm lucky I didn't die from smoke inhalation.