killbodyeatsoul


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"cold silence has a tendency to atrophy any sense of compassion"
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Food dump, round two, random order, best story first.

Sadly didn't get around to have me some of the famous hot pot when I was in Sichuan, so I hit the first one I saw on my first evening in Xian. And made a total fool of myself %) All the ones I saw before had you stick your items on some spikes and put them into the boiling oil, pull em out some time later and enjoy them. This was different in that you just loosely threw our stuff in (I ordered lotus root, tofu, yams, mushroom, potato – and beef which they forgot) and fish it out with your chopsticks. Didn't have any problems whatsoever handling the sticks until this meal and haven't had any since, but all the shit I had was cut thin and flat and very much impossible to get out the pot again. Even more so when it was super oily. So after watching me struggle the helpful waiter gave me lots of advice and instructions – fruitless – and in the end really showed the patience to stand by my side and get all the stuff out for me. One by one. I did manage the shrooms by myself, though. And then he even declined a tip …



After the spoiled hot pot experience it was still raining heavily on my first day in Xian, but I didn't want to go to bed, yet so I stopped by in a neat whisky bar. Got myself a double on the rock when one of the guys working there struck a conversation with me. He goes by the name Fox, really  nice dude. Told me he worked at a hostel for quite a while and was super suprised when I told him where I was from. "None of the Germans I've met were smiling!" (= After some chatting he asked me if I've been out to see the Mid-Autumn Festival (The one I've heard about earlier) and told me that it's been going on the night before. People take into the streets and dance with large dragon figures and all that good stuff, aah man, I missed it! But also there's the tradition of buying these moon cakes for your family and close friends and eat them together to wish each other luck and such. I've seen a lot of ads of those on the subway, didn't give it any further thought, of course. So he went to the back and brought out a box of these! :D
The cakes are very heavy so it stuffs you up real fast. They're filled with some fruity substance, and they actually taste very good!



These were great, just picked one of the dumpling images from the menu and scored a very good filling. If I had to guess it was small bricks of tofu, minced meat, spinache, onions and chives amongst others. If the waiters are afraid the sauce is too hot for you, because you only dip it in halfway, they often get you another one: 100% garlic – just as good!




This was some weird wrap-thingy with chicken and a witless salad filling topped with regular ketchup. 0/10 would buy again.



Got this  bread-like waffle with chives and stuff from the same guy, was way better.



This was a bigger serving than it seems and really delicious. Stirred egg, cold tomatoes and green stuff and super broad noodles. Check out that tiny-ass gone-in-two-gulps plastic cup they gave me for the beer ;D



This was kinda interesting, the left bowl was filled with cold seedlings and morchella, the right one had dry, fried noodles with bacon as crispy as egg shell. Was good, though.



Love me some peanuts in about everything.



I present y'all: My new favourite ice cream! I braced myself for a big disappointment after picking this by the picture on the box, but I couldn't've been more happy to be in the wrong.
What you see here is just the tip of the iceberg. Inside the crispy strawberry-sprinkled white-chocolate coating the inner workings start off with some semi-frozen Nimm2-like substance, later followed by a second stage of coating – chocolate with crunchy crisps – that surround a core of strawberry ice cream.
I often find myself getting carried away thinking of ways I could get a container of this through the customs at Hamburg port and up the Elbe.



Peanuts, hot kung pao, celery, endless stream of white tea, nuff said.



Can't even remember what's in this, but I do remember being fully satisfied and stuffed to the brim after indulging in it.



The hotel in Kunming didn't serve breakfast so I had to go out and see what's on the morning menu in the streets for the first time. Got this and it was really okay, some meaty filling in a yeast-or-whatever dumpling.



Weird image cause it looks kinda flat, but this actually had a huge heap of rice underneath. The joint I got this in was in Xian and you could hear someone singin in a Turkic language in the backroom. Made perfect sense with this dish, the combination and spices weren't like all the other food I had here, almost very familiar.



Spicy, good and topped off with Snow Beer. The looks you get when you decline a cup …



This was everything all at once. Dragon fruit, mango, several types of melon, lychee, three kinds of syrup on top and I don't know what else. But that wasn't even it. The bowl was first filled with crushed ice so you start out with a fruit salad that slowly turns into a slushy and becomes water-ice in the end. Quite fancy and refreshing.
And I suppose the two spoons were meant as a good intended hint :0



Mmmh, nothing to write home about. Other than people here don't seem to order drinks with their food and Fanta isn't Fanta at all.



Umm, well. It poured outside and my shoes were already dripping so I took my chance with the restaurant at the hotel. They actually had an app on a tablet with images to pick from and while I was waiting for my choice to arrive I noticed there was a wedding party going on in the other room. They had to escort a girl out who couldn't even stand up straight no more and several times men and adolescents roamed the area while chanting and navigating their path around the columns, that was actually fun to witness.
My dish then looked nothing like I remembered the picture. The rice had the firmness of old pudding and was speckled with parts of fried sausage. Tasted like an insult. "Ate" a quarter and left my money on the table.



The other night I ordered a basic rice and greenery dish when another guy sat behind me and we got into a conversation via his WeChat voice-to-text app. He then ordered this good stuff – with too spoons so I could also have some bites of the taste! Next day I went to the kitchen and showed them this image to get that same thing myself :D Thanks buddy!



You already know, it's good, hot, spicy noodles, peanuts, some other stuff and a nice broth to sip on on the side.



Fuck yeah, a potato thing! Didn't even need to think once before I headed over to the stand to grab one of these once I saw 'em.



Ooooh how wicked it felt when I discovered these things. And they had them right around my corner! The single very best breakfast replacement I've had over here! It was kinda like a bread-roll relative soaked in egg, sprinkled with cives.



Not too sure what kind of dough the lady fried there, but she assured me it's very good. Alright then :D It was filled with spinach and green stuff and it actually was good, apart from the heavy oil taste.



Last and least. I think I found that fucking jelly whale-barf shit I had back in Chengdu. So glad I got that experience over with.

19919   |   photo travel text 中国 云南 贵州 陝西 food

These are the upper floors of the supposed Yongning Intenational Art Museum. Actually it's four floors of antique vendors, two mahogani furniture stores and a hotel. The museum is located in the basement – doors closed, lights out. This is the second museum/gallery I wanted to visit that is closed for no apparent reason. Two other ones housing contemporary art that I really wanted to see where temporarily shut due to maintenance or being relocated at the moment. Seesh …
Still a nice and prominent building, though.

19919   |   photo 中国 陝西 architecture building roof

Took a walk on the chity wall today, it's massive! Taking a bike wasn't feasible in the rain, unfortunately, still was very cool. Enjoyed some great views over the inner city and the surrounding park, the moat and the high rises behind them.

19919   |   photo 中国 陝西 city architecture wall plant tree

I so adore roaming these cities at night and immerse myself in the xenon sea, especially right after it stopped raining.

18919   |   photo 中国 陝西 city street night light

The weather was suprisingly good this morning so I skipped my initial plans and took the train to Mount Hua, one of the five mountains in China and infamous for its planked walk section. Got out, jumped into the next cab, got going and the driver tells me the mountain is closed because of the bad weather up there. Ummm …

So I asked him for other beautiful spots in the area and he recommended Xiyue Temple. It was the largest temple area I've been to so far and there were only about six other people visiting. So I made the best of it and enjoyed the intriguing surroundings. On my way back to the train station the sun came out a bit and it got breeding hot in an instant. Phew, that got me a small impression of what it must've been like in Xian last week when they had clear skies all day. 

18919   |   photo 中国 陝西 architecture temple painting pattern

Anyone remember the hell of the upside-down sinners from Big Trouble in Little China? Yeah, today was like that.

17919   |   photo 中国 陝西 weather water rain

Spent the rest of the day in Xian's Muslim Quarter. In the olden days Xian was one end of the Silk Road and there's been a sizeable population of Muslims in the city ever since. It seems a bit touristy, because a lot of people are winding through all the small streets and there's just sooo much stuff on sale. Very much worth some visits, nonetheless. As you can imagine lots of food different from what you'd usually find in Chinese cities and again a unique vibe amongst the people that are going about their businesses.

15919   |   photo 中国 陝西 travel text street human light

After the table tennis incident I got real hyped, listened to some good Earthgang and floated through the city. Earlier while rainy-time-scouting I've read about a cool clothing store with a skate shop on the second floor, so I had me a nice lunch and went to the secluded alley to check out what they had going on. Couldn't find it, but saw signs indicating the Cat Cafe, so I thought I could enjoy a cup and ask around where I could find the intended store. Once I squeezed through the walls leading to the cafe and climbed the super tiny stairs I got greeted by, well, a bunch of cats. There was one girl half asleep with a cat purring right on her lap and as soon as I sat down at a table a fluffy hairball came out from under it and casually made at home on my legs. :3
The coffee was surprisingly alright and incidently a real Americano. Sadly I then found out that the shop I was looking for had closed down for good. Darn, again :O

15919   |   photo 中国 陝西 travel text animal cat

This morning I stepped out the door and immediately got a bit frustrated with the weather. The rain poured down since I've arrived in Xi'an (the apostrophe demarks that it's two syllables, I'll drop it from now on) and I just didn't want to waste time in my hotel. It wasn't much fun, everything turned into a puddle, I got soaked despite my precautions and returned to the hotel after an hour and a half to blow dry my shoes. Ooof.

Took a nappy nap, lo and behold: the rain had diminshed to a managable drizzle. So I went right out once again. Finally I got to really check out the city. Xian's center is a 4 by 3 or something km rectangle enclosed by a big ass chity wall. It's over 600 years old and the best preserved in all of China. If it had been dry I'd opted for a bike trip right on the wall, maybe I can squeeze that into one of the remaining days. Inside the walls there's an unnumerable amount of narrow alleyways waiting to be explored and get lost in. It feels way more intimate than the other cities I've been to so far. Everything is a store and since I've only got one train ride ahead of me I'm more than ready to bust out my last kuai and have the vendors grind down their teeth when hearing/reading my offers. At some point the rain completely stopped and that's when the day really began to take a turn for the better.

Shortly after a dream within a dream came true for me. I was just strolling about carelessly, taking some snaps when suddenly my whole body hair got teased by that old familiar sound I've already heard twice on this journey so far. It went like this:"Ping" – "Pong" – "Ping" – "Pong".
First time was when I witnessed two grannys playing in a Chengdu monastery, getting more exercise from picking up the ball than actually hitting it. Second time in the wetlands park south of Guiyang – two teenage boys who could've beaten the old ladies on a good day.
This time was different, though, the enormous frequency of the sound already gave it away. When I came past the corner I saw two senior men engaged in a fierce duel. Holy crap, they were fast! Intrigued by their playing style I planned on watching a bit, hoping to gain some insight as to what school it might've originated from and maybe find out about their secret techniques. Before I could even complete that thought one of them smiled and waved at me inviting me over. "Haa? Ja, ja ja, bin sofort dabei!". I just can't tell how excited I was, the masters really offered to teach me about their ways!! :O
So Master Badger Hermit handed me his Dragon Taming Racket to play with – outstandingly balanced, layered unusually thick, exellent grip – and I was to compete against Master Heron Hermit. After his first couple of serves I thought this was going to get very embarassing for I still am but an aspiring adept and overshot my returns by a great deal. But be that as it may, as the last remaining disciple of the School of the Raging Boar I had to stand my ground and strive with as much honor and skill as I possibly could. It took me awhile to get the hang of how the coated metal table and the racket worked together. Mind you, this was no amateur city park equipment, that stuff caused more friction than the American import tariffs and it was simply amazing how much curvature you could apply to the Snake Egg's path. A real joy! I got the knack of it and finally got to unleash my infamous Feinting Phantom Backspin. Everyone falls for that, as did my opponent. Master Heron Hermit snickered. Meanwhile the Young Master Hare Hermit appeared and went on to spar with Master Badger Hermit on the table next to us. What a turmoil, they seemed equally skilled and I swear I could sense the Nen-flares lashing out even over to our side! No one I've ever played against ever could seriously take on any of these three, straight up and down!

We continued to exchange some good shots for a good fifteen-twenty minutes and I was honestly quite satisfied that I landed some good hits even if I was clearly outmatched. All of us had real good fun there, I proceded to thank everyone at the tables for the great time and continued on my way.

This humbling sparring session alone just so much more than made up for all that stupid rain. I'll always remember this valuable lesson and hope that one day I've honed my skills enough to return and lose against one of the Masters in a real match.

15919   |   photo 中国 陝西 travel text sports human man ball