Nihal, friends! That in Chinese means “ Hello !”. Chinese because at the moment I am in China, where for ten o’clock meal on the train route from Harbin to Beijing.
In this part of travel writing, you will learn: how I almost ate a dog, about how to get into China from Vladivostok free, what will happen to a tourist-alone is not in a very touristic place not knowing the local language.
How to get from Vladivostok to China without TICKET
Now, first things first. A couple of days before the planned date of their poezka to China, I went to the bus station Vladivostok to buy bus tickets to China. By bus from Vladivostok you can get to the border with the Russian city Suyhenfe or drive a little deeper into the heart of China to the city of Harbin. Suyhenfe – a favorite of Primorye border town and shopping center, for a visit that does not require registration of Chinese visa. It is a city where every Chinese person speaks Russian, where residents of Vladivostok, Ussuriysk and neighboring cities come for the weekend “just eat” and poshopitsya. I decided at once to get to the city of Harbin, because several lines of railway tracks pass through this, quite a large city by Russian standards and further logistics to Beijing from here should be much easier.
In the international box office bus Vladivostok turns out that tickets for buses in China sells several companies. These companies share the market trucking. Thus, in September, the agency sells tickets Located in the city center, but in the bus station to buy a ticket you can not. Fair to say that it is possible to buy a ticket online on the website. I drove into the city center for tickets and got into the lunch break (on the site of the lunch break is not a word).
This was the second sign that something has gone wrong.
5:30 am the day of departure. An hour later, I’ll jump on the bus, which will take 12-14 hours for me right in China. Before leaving the house, I decide to double-check all the documents and find that I can not remember where I put the ticket on the bus. Frantically sorting through every pocket two backpacks I understand that the ticket and gone. Meanwhile, before the departure is about 30 minutes and I decide to make it all costs to take the bus without a ticket. Signs of continued tells me that maybe now is not the best idea to go to China. So, coming on the street, we found that our cars are hopelessly locked on both sides of the car
10 minutes before the departure. I’m at the bus station. Entrance to the building of the station is carried out on the ticket. Mollify the guard to let me on the bus, as is only 5 minutes, and my ticket at the bottom of the backpack. I run out to the square station. Me 20 pieces of buses. Randomly selects one of them .. oh yeah, this is my bus. Dialogue with driver for 2 minutes before the departure about the same:
– I’ve lost the ticket, take?
– Yes, but at the border you will not miss.
– For certain you have a list of passengers, who are you taking?
– No, we have only the total number of people on the bus.
– Ok. Dokinte even to the border. After 9 o’clock in the morning, I called the office of the company that sold me the ticket, so they confirmed that I was not going hare.
The slogan of the project “ The adventure begins when something went wrong ” until fully justified. I’m going to China without a ticket. Something went wrong. The Adventure Begins.
On the border about a bus ticket, no one asked. And I am without any problems overcome it in the area of the village border. The biggest difficulty with the lack of a ticket was the problem with the entrance to the building bus stations during stops. Because the toilet in our bus was not at all stops on tickets held at the station on his way. I also had to come up every time a way to get to the station. Otherwise, I did not feel any discomfort. Thank driver who without question put me on the bus without a ticket.
Passing the city Suyhenfe, which came out the whole bus, except for 4 people including me, after 6 hours we arrived in Harbin. We landed far from the w / e and bus stations, at some nondescript street. The first feelings are very mixed. It’s like a hammer on the head attached. Noisy, scary, private taxi drivers from all sides raid. I prepared in advance and booked himself hostel in the center of the city. I have a set point in the Navigator where to go. And this place is about 5 kilometers away. With two backpacks will make it easy. I took the help of his fellow travelers on the bus in search of a taxi. I was lucky that they were talking in Chinese. Since the first auto-rickshaw, which I caught myself invited me to just 30 yuan to the destination, the second taxi – 50 yuan. As a result, with the help of fellow travelers, I have reached the official taxi drivers on the counter for 13 yuan (~ 78 rubles).
First day on another planet
There really feel like an alien. People are looking at you, discuss. Some ask sfotkatsya with them. In English does not mean no one, except the girl at the reception desk of the hostel. Inscriptions in English is not duplicated. Internet is very limited. Facebook – is not available already as Google Maps, Gmail and many other online resources, indirectly associated with Google. Russian SIM card does not accept incoming messages, which makes it impossible to access the Internet bank and other services that require a two-level authentication. All this creates a feeling of extreme discomfort. especially at first. For simple things required to make an incredible amount of effort. For example, buying a toothbrush or a train ticket was more like a game of “Crocodile”.
I spent on the road 12 hours and I already want to quickly relax and unwind. But the girl at the reception suggested that the ticket office, as well as many other institutions operating in China to 16:30 pm. During the season, buying train tickets in China can be difficult. For example, in China you can not buy tickets in advance for the entire route. Train ticket can only be bought from the town in which they reside.
Given the fact that I have a navigator to navigate at first very difficult. Ticket office, I have not found, but on the main street in Harbin dealer store suggested that one of the hotels you can try to buy a train ticket, which I did. Thank girl at the reception of my hostel, which I previously wrote hieroglyphics on paper that I need a “ticket on September 18 in Beijing, inexpensive.” Ticket seller did not speak in English, but applying your skills in the game “Crocodile” I was able to explain to him that I need a regular train, reserved seat with lying place.
It was the first small victory for me tired of the road and on new emotions coming from all sides, I fell off to sleep as early as 8 pm.
Waking up at 6 am the next day, in the lobby for free met a Chinese woman Hong Kongskogo origin, in the company of which I pass the time until the evening, motayas most symbolic places of the city. Ate it, I would not have gone crazy struck me in China. Janice taught me how to use buses. . Showed where the central railway station and how to get there. What street is better to buy food, but from what should be abandoned. Orientate me on the prices of basic products. For example, without her help I would not have guessed that the prices of vegetables and fruits in the store are specified in some of the local unit of measurement, which is approximately half a kilogram. Janice dissuaded me to try fried scorpions, grasshoppers and various live larvae on the street, showed character that indicates that the institution serves of dogs. Oh, I almost forgot, she also taught me how to correctly pronounce the Chinese some basic expressions like: “Hi! My name is Dmitry. I was the first time in China.” This phrase is very liberating the Chinese when they are addressed and they are happy to go for help
So the second day was for me some educational program in China. For what Janice, of course, thank you very much. She was the second person for 2 days in China, who spoke in English. During all this time I have not met a single European.
RAILWAY TRAIN IN CHINA
Later in the afternoon, taught by experience the day before I had previously check their tickets and passports, as well as attend to catch the last bus that goes to the train station. Since China is only one time zone to the whole country and rigged it under the eastern part of the country, in the same Harbin in September dawns about 5 in the morning and darkens as early as 6 pm. Many establishments are open until 16: 30-17: 00 hours. Buses run until 21:00.
Well, here I am at the train station in Harbin. People of darkness. On the whole area of noise “air raid”. No one reacts to this siren. Fits all employees station with his ticket and the phrase “Hello. My name is Dmitry. I was the first time in China,” I extend to them my train ticket and they help me to find a first terminal, and then the waiting room, then exit the platform, the path train , wagon. Most do it for the first time is quite difficult, because all information, except for train number on the ticket is written in hieroglyphs.
Trains like our Russian. Inside neatly. Unlike reserved seat in the fact that no side seats, instead of them at the bottom of the tables, on top of luggage space. In the coupe instead of 4 beds fit six. There is a boiler with hot water, two toilets and a separate room with a few shells.
I had a night train middle class. For 11 hours I covered a distance of 1500 kilometers from Harbin to Beijing. It seems to be a little assimilated in China. Many things are not so shocking as the first two days. Just nearby the hostel 365Inn in the heart of the historic part of Beijing. Got here just 1 yuan (6 rubles) on the subway. There is quite comfortable. Small streets, all sorts of coffee shops, street food, hostels. Go motorikshi, electric bikes. Quite a lot of Europeans. On the street a strong haze. Has not yet figured out what. I think this is some environmental problem megalopolis.