10th April 2011
Kunming sits at 1,870 metres above sea level. While average temperature in April is 27 degrees C, it is pleasant and dry. Subang Jaya where I lived, sits at 70 metres above sea level. Same temperature, different altitude, different feeling.
The 3 odd hours MAS flight to Kunming landed at 3:15pm and Kunming shares the same time zone as Malaysia. The flight was almost full, majority being Chinese Malaysians visiting their ancestors' origins. A Chinese gentleman from Kajang struck a conversation with me while alighting. His group will be visiting Li Jiang and Kunming. I told him we will be doing Shangri La as well, apart from Li Jiang and of course Kunming. He was quick to point out that Shangri La is already spoiled, giving rather vague reasons. How did he know? The standard answer : "People say!"
For certain, he was not going to spoil my holidays. The "people say" phrase have been overly misused and I have to sympathize with those who succumbed to this standard phrase.
It would only be an overnight stop at Kunming as we would catch our early flight to Shangri La the following day. Immigration clearance was quite fast, and we had a young tour guide, Jackson waiting for us at the arrival hall. Jackson was the same guide when Hj Khailani and his wife visited Kunming in 2010. Hj Khailani quipped that Jackson still sport the same needle-like hair style.
We first checked in to the hotel, had a brief rest and Jackson brought us for a quick visit of a tourist spot (what else) before the sun sets. The place is called TRUMP COFFEE and we were supposed to visit some flower shops. I don't suppose it belongs to Donal Trump! Judging from the several tourist buses in the car park, it was obviously a must-visit location for tourists.
As we entered, the coffee aroma was indeed strong. Momentarily, you forgot about the flowers. Everything coffee was on sale - coffee of different brands and packing, coffee biscuits, coffee sweets, etc etc. To move forward, one must pass through ALL the stalls selling all the coffee merchandises. The narrow pathway was cleverly arranged. Manpower or rather womanpower were not an issue in China. So, the salesgirls were at every nook and corner, pampering us to sample the product and buy them.
Having survived the coffee, we came to the flower section. Ah, finally. Again, everything flower was there. If you are planning a wedding, this is certainly the place to get flowers - yang hidup atau yang mati. But, please don't forget to add the cost of the flight to Kunming.
|Mushroom so big and hard, in abundance|
Did we buy anything? Yes, coffee crackers and some tiny winy souvenirs. You know, ladies can't leave a shop empty-handed! Anyway, my wife is usually a very careful spender...hint...hint..
Back at the hotel, we were greeted by a wedding reception at the hotel entrance. This is something different. Both the bride and bridegroom were there, together with the parents greeting their guests. So, how about our "Raja Sehari" doing the same act?
|Beautiful couple aren't they?|
Hours later, after the wedding, I am sure they will be scooted off in this stretched limousine for their honeymoon. They could actually honeymoon in the stretched limo!
We wished the couple a "Happy Wedding until children and grandchildren"
|The stretched limousine|
Tomorrow, we leave for Shangri La.