Bucket List for Travel

My Travel Bucket List


If a task is not written down on a list for me it will likely not get done, or certainly not get done on time.  I am a methodical list maker.  With that in mind, I created my first travel bucket list.
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Trash, Trash and more trash…..

Mexican trashMexican Trash 2Something we noticed in both China and Mexico was an apparent misunderstanding of trash.  In both Mexico and in China we saw paid workers sweeping up leaves in the street (China) and sweeping leaves on our patio (Mexico) then diligently placing these natural leaves in a nearby trash receptacle.  Also, in both instances you could count on seeing a large pile of real trash very nearby being ignored.  Neither country has yet developed a noticeable regard for the environment and keeping it clean.  If one wanted to, I am 100 percent confident a similar trash pile could be found in the States.  However, one difference is that it is not at all unusual to see government paid workers in the States walking along a highway cleaning it up.  Also, sections of highway are auctioned off in a joint venture between the paying public or corporations and the government for clean up.  Kramer on Seinfeld bought such a section of highway and carried the cleanliness a bit too far.   I clearly do not understand the many hurdles these poorer countries are facing and I have no solution for this situation.  As a new world traveler, I am only pointing this out as something I noticed.  Both countries’ citizens were interested in us and helpful in every way, that is just harder to capture by the camera.

Chinese Street Food, Restaurant Food

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Drying fish in a Shanghai ally

I am proud to say I eat just about any food.  If it is on a menu, I’ll try it.  As a young kid, I ate rattlesnake, squirrel, turtle steak, frog legs, kangaroo tail soup and just about any odd item found on a menu.  The squirrel and frog legs I hunted, which makes me sound a bit like a hillbilly, but it was fun as a kid.  I really looked forward to new foods in China.  However, overall, it was disappointing.  Despite us driving past miles and miles of red peppers piled high in the fields, the food was boiled and bland.  Boiled broccoli, boiled cauliflower, boiled bok choy.  Also, the Chinese do not differentiate between breakfast, lunch and dinner foods.  In the morning you had much of the same foods on the buffet the prior night.  Very few of the dishes were great.  However, I did get to add to my list of unusual foods, which included:

  • Camel tendons
  • Donkey Skin
  • Carp, full of bones
  • Pigs Ear, nothing but cartilage, what else?
  • Horse sausage

My main question was who got the good cuts of meat if in the fine restaurants they were feeding me donkey skin and camel tendons???


Quail on a stick

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Outdoor cooks

No, I did not get to eat the above fish.  They were hanging in a Shanghai ally.  Oddly enough, I did not see any flies in these open air markets full of hanging food.
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Chinese Transportation

I see Bicycles EVERYWHERE

I see Bicycles EVERYWHERE

So how does one find their bike here?  Once found, how do they get it out?

In the cities, what initially looks like a two lane road is really a six lane road.  Along both curbs are fast moving scooters and bicycles going both ways.  Before stepping into the street, one must look both ways for scooters,  motorized carts and bikes.  Then upon crossing both lanes of automobile traffic, you have to look BOTH ways again.  Vehicles, we were told, have the right of way.  We saw very few wrecks and the traffic just flowed.  Our bus driver once had to back out into very heavy traffic.  He just went slowly, kept backing out into the traffic that simply flowed around the bus.  Those who could scoot by did until their path was blocked.  No horns honked, as drivers just flowed around him, like molasses in January.  That could never happen in the States.  If one did attempt it here, there would finger pointing of sorts and much horn honking….  Oddly enough, there were very few wrecked cars and no old beat up vehicles.  All the cars appeared to be quite new.

These are photos of a more rural area in far western China.

Notice the wedding dress

Notice the wedding dress

The Race is ON!

The Race is ON!

Hey Woman, Take me to Market

Hey Woman,
Take me to Market

China’s Building Boom

China Building BOOM

China’s Building BOOM

Each city we visited in China had much evidence of the governments efforts to convert China to a land of cities from a land of farms.  On a return trip from the Great Wall, some of us on the tour bus started counting the cranes but stopped as we could not count fast enough and we totaled over 100.  I asked each of our guides for details about this building boom but did not get consistent answers.  Fortunately many of my questions seemed to be answered in a feature article in the International New York Times from November 11, 2013 “In New China, Hope Fades and Homes Crumble.”
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