31.12.2016 Kunming and the bar where we couldn’t pay for a beer………

Woken to the smell of bread baking meant muesli was a distant memory. Therefore breakfast was home made bread, butter and home made jam with a double shot americano.

As we are on our way to Laos we are in need of dollars for the visa on arrival, so a trip to the Bank of China furnished us with dollars to leave this country.

Tourism next, and a wander through the Old Streets of Kunming was on the cards,  only these old streets were in the middle of being demolished, rebuilt and rebranded as the Old Streets of Kunming…..so typically chinese. Instead we wandered the Bird and Flower market, after a while wishing there were more flowers than birds / animals in tiny cages.

Our map showed a Dai restaurant close by so we went in and had a refreshing, vibrantly tasty meal, using lots of herbs, chilli and oil, you can tell we are close (800km) to Thailand. 

We also thought it best to try the Dai sweet wine, not sure it had much alcohol but it was like a sweet vaguely fermented coconut drink, lush.

Nearby was a night market area, thinking it would be great to see in the day we naively visited the streets, they were desolate apart from the trail of blood down the pavement and the soldiers practising marching in the middle of a square made up of tacky,  shiny night clubs. We hurriedly moved on.

Carrefour was around the corner so we ventured in, again it was a sprawling mish mash of assistants, weird foods and live turtles. We stuck to what we know and bought french wine. None of the assistants came near us.

Since last nights sunflower seeds were so good we made a trip back for more and also splashed out on a thermos flask and some lucky red chinese socks for Guy.

A sugar fix was required so we took a photo of this bakery for me mum.

And bought donuts from this bakery.

It was now happy hour at the local Irish bar, so being good British citizens it would be rude not to visit and hand over our well earned cash in exchange for cheap (£3.50 a pint) belgium ales….. 

The place was deserted! How different to the UK we thought, and so got on whats app and informed our mates.

Back to the guesthouse bean bags, heated floor, sunflower seeds and ale we listened to some music and called family and a couple of friends to wish them a Happy New Year. It was great to catch up.

We then needed to pay our bill at Humdinger bar, so made our way there, loving the scenery on the way. 

Outside the bar they had set up a smaller bar where they were giving away dark ale for free, he wouldn’t take any money for the ales previously and now was giving us more beer for free. It was like all our Christmases had come at once……we chatted to the expats, and eventually had to sneak inside the bar to to actually pay for a beer. 

The huge bar was packed with chinese enjoying the live music, we got tenny plastic stools to sit on at the front of the stage, felt like small royalty.  By this stage of the evening the ale was taking effect on Guy so at 11.30 I decided to get him out the bar……He still got us home and we were passed out by 11.45pm, the first NYE we have slept through…..we are getting old.

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