Tuesday, 28 June 2016

June 13 Datong to Erenhot (Inner Mongolia)

Another very long drive punctuated by a trip to a Hanging Monastery and the traffic jam from hell. A large part of the drive is through Torrential Rain which at one stage is so bad we just have to stop as we have no visibility at all. In total 600km plus and climbing to  5,000ft.
Sadly 2  cars are already out with terminal problems with a third Bentley having done wheel bearings and it seems he can only keep going if he flies in a replacement wheel, hopefully he will.
This is the land of Dinosaurs, reputedly where you find the most dinosaur bones and fossils and so they show this  with their famous Erenhot gate.

Tomorrow the fun starts.

THe Mongolian Steppes

Not buried in sand despite Shovels best efforts

The best temporary fix so far on the rally, the radiator apparently from an old Mongolian tractor, the top is actually brass. Brilliant and the car worked afterwards. 

A couple of young local entertainers who came to the campsite with the rest of the local town to put on a concert for us.

Our sister car just made it through this ford, a lot of cars got stuck but luckily we kept rolling on.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

June 12 Beijing to Datong

Race Starts at The Great Wall – We of course miss the turn off for the Great Wall despite Shovel saying quite clearly -  ‘turn right here, yes its this right, we missed it now’. Not a good start but we managed to get back in time.
The drive to Datong is long and pretty boring as its just a road filled with Coal Trucks, the highlight is one very dark tunnel with oncoming coal trucks in a space that looked like it only had room for one way traffic, that shows how tedious the drive was. Still it is  getting us closer to Mongolia.
After dinner we go for a wander on the streets of Datong and find a great little impromptu street karaoke bar. Lovely little bar and they made us very welcome further extending Shovels love for China, I can see Kuni will be going on holiday in China for the next 5 years. 
Shovel can't think of anything to add today.
This is the La France, they originally manufactured Fire Engines but then tried their hand at cars, it is a mighty beast,

Sexy Lexy raring to go at the Great Wall, although that is not the Great Wall behind her, just a big wall.

South China MOrning Post News article.

June 11 Beijing

Nigel Post

Currently sitting watching Shovel wring the neck of his laundry while in his underpants. I intend to institute a requirement that I should be allowed at least a coffee before I have to look at that. Following wrapping a shirt in the towel and then wringing it dry he then proceeded to hang up on the washing line a completely different dry shirt. This might be a long 6 weeks. Bright blue skies in Beijing and Shovel, this being his first time in China after 20 plus years in HK, is doubting what everyone else has ever told him about China’s dirt and pollution. 

Shovel Post:

Nigel objects to me having my clothes laundered by the hotel – he says it is decadent and bourgeoisie. I am therefore forced to suffer the ignominy of washing my shirt, socks and undies by hand. This is exactly how Nazi Germany started. However I am amazed at how quickly my super-light Rohan shirt dries – the wonders of modern technology. Then I realize that its actually today’s freshly laundered shirt I have just hung up to dry. Nigel titters at my error whilst writing his blog notes so I festoon my undies and socks around him on a makeshift washing line.