After my 6-hour layover in the purgatory, that was the Chinese border city of Pingxiang. I was ready for the next part of my journey. The train from Pingxiang to Chongzuo.
Whilst the press concentrates on the Chinese CRH bullet train network, most cities are still connected by old train network. Especially in the countryside. So I boarded the 10.07 2 hours slow train. Which offered some stunning views. Particularly when passing through the Yangshuoesque village of Ningming. On arrival in Chongzuo, it quickly dawned on me that I was pretty unprepared. No hotel booked, 5 hours to kill, and little to do. I had a little look around the river. Which although a little like Yangshuo, lacked the same magic. In fact, whilst I’d been excited to visit there in essence, in initial looks it was just another Chinese city. I eventually found a hotel. Rested for a few hours before meeting my friend for a drink.
Despite promising me dinner, my friend had not only eaten. But their idea of a “drink” was milk tea. So by 8.30 pm, we’d finished chatting. I was hungry and thirsty after…
In China, the go to when you need food and drink in any city is BBQ. Particularly if you don’t know the place. The locals like to call it Kao Rou. And if you don’t know where to go, a good rule of thumb is always the train station.
So I headed to the train station. Which was near my hotel. And unsurprisingly, there was a street meat vendor. I indulged in the usual meat on a stick of mutton, beef and Chicken. Washed down with the local beer. But the interesting part of this particular meal was ordering a whole cooked Quail.
So how to eat a whole cooked Quail? Well, you don’t just bit the meat off, you eat the whole damned thing, bones, head and all. Really good, if not a little weird (particularly the head and brain).
Overall a decent meal, but unfortunately not only did I get lost for 2 hours afterwards, I also got the shits, badly. Not sure if it was the foods fault, or simply my body getting used to the bacteria of Chongzuo, but needless to say with the lack of toilets in China, I was forced to get rather inventive. Not the best of days in Chingzuo, but at least I had seen the place and could knock off another from my explorations of Guangxi province.