From villan to looser
Yangshuo Travel Blog› entry 23 of 27 › view all entries
I had to take the train to Guilin and from there a minibus that will take me to Yangshou. In the bus ticket office in Guilin I ask for a ticket to Yangshou but I am told that I should hop in a minibus as they didn't sell the tickets but they should cost Y12. A man posing himself as the ticket controller of the minibus told me I could get to Yangshou for Y15 and I told him I wanted it for Y12, this kept on for a while but he settled for Y12 as more tourist were coming.
We had barely taken our seats when the man came and asked us to buy the ticket not for the agreed price of Y12 but Y15. Apperantly the guy had a very bad short time memory as he didn't know anymore and wanted the Y15.
As we didn't budge and the bus was getting farther and farther away from the Guilin bus station he started agressive negotiations by pulling my arm so I would get out of the bus. I told him politely that he should stop touching me.
As the bus was nearing the outskirts of Guilin we decided to pay the fellow Y15 and asked him to smile a bit more because he didn't look happy. Shortly after this he went out the bus and irumour has it that he is still walking back to the Guilin bus station.
In Yanghsou I team up with Yosh, another Dutchie, to get on the bikes and do the thing all tourists on bikes do in Yangshou: get lost. We wanted to go the moon rock but ended up in the rice paddies which had not seen a living soul since the last harvest time, let alone two lost tourist on a mountain bike of dubious Chinese quality.
The following day I meet Remco and Mark, yep again Dutchies, and do a Li river cruise to see the image found on the back of the Y20 note in real. The tour operator assures us that we will see it and that we have a cruise of about 1.5 hours. The promised 1.5 hours cruise on the river Li is actually a half an hour cruise as we speed back to the dock. We were flabbergasted by this boldness and clear act of villanly. We were being cheated out of 1 hour cruise... we claimed our hour by sitting in the boat while our Chinese tourists already had left.
After a frenzy of phone calls between our villan, the CITS and us we finaly get our moneys worth and we board another boat for the remaining hour. Our villan drives the boat at an anguishing slow speed, just enough to get us floating and we were going down stream. Exactly after 30 minutes he turns the boat and we go back up stream for about 10 minutes because then we come to a halt. Apperantly our villan took us on a boat which hadn't enough fuel or as one of our Chinese tourists said: No energy. He just tumbled down the pecking order from villan to looser. I don't know what he was thinking of, taking us in a low fuel powered boat up the river knowing well that he would not make it back.
I sense a deja-vu: here we go again, we stay put in the boat untill we get what we paid for: that is seeing the Y20 picture in the life. Again after several phone calls with the CITS agency we see the Y20 picture in the life and we leave the boating for what it is in China.