April 25. Way high.

Arrive in China with a touch of old-age grandeur, by boat rather than by airplane. We take the big ferry from Incheon to Weihai (pronounced way high) and have a convenient overnight journey sleeping on a mat and munching cup-o-noodles. Upon arrival, we gaze at the diligent cranes and trucks performing the logistic necessities to keep the giant we are about to enter going. Bulky containers are placed on oversized trucks as if they were little toys. As a first impression of China, it might be an adequate one, at least it reinforces the stereotype.

We walk around and find the port city quite similar to Korea. Breakfast in a place that has no English, but eggs with tomato, a staple in this region. We are disoriented and feel stupid because we haven’t prepared ourselves for the linguistic vacuum. We try to hitch a truck, the driver smiles, but it is too hard to ask if he could give us a ride to Beijing without any language. So we take a bus to the train station, book a sleeper train to Beijing and have lunch in a kind of food court that serves delicious fresh noodle soup – promising for the remainder of our stay in China.

And so we enjoy our first day here, while our luggages sleeps at the station and wait for our train to take us to the capital.

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