Obviously our blog hasn’t received much attention in the past while. It’s not for lack of interesting things that we’ve been up to, nor for lack of time. No excuse in fact.
The last we checked in, our adventure was in Bali I think. That was about 5 months ago! It seems like a lot longer than that. We’re on our 3rd “new life” since then I think.
After Bali we settled down for 3 months in Ling Shui, China, which is about an hour outside of Sanya. We had a beautiful apartment overlooking the beach. The neighborhood we were in, called Fuliwan, was incredible. There was a giant pool just steps from our building, plus another unbelievable infinity pool up on the mountain that overlooked the whole area. There was a 4km private beach, dozens of playgrounds, a few restaurants, nice walking trails along the beach and through the many gardens, and you got around the neighbourhood by jumping on one of the free golf-cart taxis. Birds were chirping, 25-30 degree weather… all the things that you’d imagine in paradise.
However, if you left the property and walked across the road you were instantly in an exact opposite world. The village beyond the gates of Fuliwan was very small. If we wanted to go grocery shopping for anything more than water and plain lays potato chips, we had to travel 30-40 minutes down bumpy old roads dodging pigs, chickens and the buses that took up about 3/4 the width of the road. Nicole had to spend about 3 hours per day taking Rae to school. We had been tempted by the luxurious first impressions Fuliwan made on us, which turned out to be a mistake. While our time there was unforgettable, we would have been much better off settling in the city (Sanya). We visited Sanya almost every week, even though it took about 3 hours to get there. We loved Sanya. Every time we visited we were quite happy.
After Hainan, we headed back home for the summer. It was interesting being back. It felt like we had never left, except that now we were homeless. We bounced between my parents homes and camping. We had a family reunion at Allouette lake, and rediscovered the beauty of mid-Vancouver Island. I fell in love with Courtney during our camping trip at Comox Lake and started imaging myself settling down for the first time in a while.
The end of our summer in Canada was chaotic. We had planned to go south for the fall, starting in Mexico and then exploring Central America. In fact, we even bought tickets to Mexico. But a spontaneous trip to the RV dealership got us thinking about alternatives. In the end we found ourselves one day before our plane was going depart for Mexico, packed and ready to leave and even in Vancouver on our way to the airport, but not wanting to go. Instead we were torn between buying an RV to explore more of our homeland or moving back to Bali to work out of a hammock for a while. One option would be a total adventure, but expensive and hard work. The other would be relaxing and cheap, but not all that interesting. One minute we were getting a hotel lined up in Mexico, the next we were talking to the bank about a loan for an RV, and the next minute we were on the phone with Rae’s potential school in Bali trying to get a spot secured. With three completely different paths to take and one day to decide, it was a bit of a roller coaster even for us.
In the end we went back to China. Ha! That probably seems like it came out of nowhere. And it did. Nicole and I were in a bit of a deadlock over when and how we’d work in a semester of school for Rae in China. It had been a tricky part of our planning. But on the day we were scheduled to leave to Mexico, the idea or moving the Chinese school semester up to September suddenly dawned on us. A few minutes later, we were checking prices for tickets. There was one leaving to Beijing in 3 days for $366. You can’t beat that price, so we booked it. And that was the end of our chaotic few weeks of fretting over what to do next.
So here we are in China. We’ve been here for about a week. Rae is in school. The weather is a bit “hazy” but hasn’t turned cold yet. I’ve already been to Haidilao twice, a giant indoor waterpark, a wedding, and even had a 2hr massage while watching a movie in a private mini-theater. So far, so good. We’re thinking we’ll probably stay here for a few months, and then… well I wont even bother finishing that sentence.