Getting to Guilin

Nicholas Quirke was swathed in an aura of trepidation on 27 August 2020 when he woke, as once again he was embarking on a journey but there would be no one to metaphorically hold his hand and he would be on his own. The usual anxiety of involving timings and flights, trains, hotels flooded to the surface of his mind with the potential problems they could cause. His adventurous spirit though continued to overshadow any reluctance his vulnerable inner child might demonstrate and once he was was in a Didi and on his way before he was able to put the annoying feelings to rest. He was flying from Daxing airport Beijing’s spectacular new international airport and it meant taking the new fast express train line. As he was familiar with the airport layout he was able to get his ticket and navigate his way through security without much difficulty and consequently he has plenty of time to kill before his flight to Guilin. The three hour journey, like the take off and landing was smooth and untroubled and he found time for a nap and to start watching ’The Sun Also Rises’ a colourful and surreal film coincidentally set in Yunnan province where he was headed. The transfer to the hotel was uncomplicated and checking into the hotel was easy, though it was the first time since he was in Mongolia that the staff were not wearing face masks. After settling in he went out to explore the riverside and to accomplish his first sight seeing venture of the ancient Sun and Moon pagodas. Two beautiful Buddhist temples sitting in a lake and linked by an underground temple. Capturing them at sunset gave him the opportunity of viewing the Sun temple from the pinnacle of the moon in daylight but by the time he had descended and crossed through the tunnel and reached the top of the Sun, night had fallen and he saw the moon Temple illuminated as nature intended. He realised he hadn’t eaten since breakfast and tried to find a suitable place to eat on his app. They were too far or shut and he had to enlist Peng’s assistance. He dined at a restaurant which translated as Forest Gump’s, though there was nothing remotely American about the space or the food. The menu was very limited, but he found 3 dishes he could have. Back at the hotel he got to speak with Cole who had take 2 prospective tenants round his flat who were very keen. It was a good note to end the evening on as he was feeling a little anxious about his mission for the next day and connecting with his son made him feel absolutely calm and reassured and losing himself to sleep was an easy affair

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