26/52 Road


This is the half-way post on a year-long blog road. Just when I thought I had found my rhythm, holidays happened and habits unravelled. I sat down at the side of the road to rest a moment and found I couldn’t get up again. Until today, almost a month later.

Taken by A. Devine

This is the road that leads down the hill from our house, and this is the song that is often on the car stereo while we drive along it, and was playing when I drove down it for the very first time, remembering what it feels like to be behind a wheel after nearly 4 years of being a passenger, like coming home after a long time away.

This is the photo taken by my darling friend who stayed in the house for a week with her family, who all held their breath as they navigated the hairpin bends for the first time and then let it out again with a gasp when they saw the view, making me realise that we no longer do either and reminding me how quickly we get used to things, both the bumps and the beauty.




road-1  road-3 road-4 road-5 road-6

For the first time since our daughter was born, we packed our backpacks and headed out on the road again. Nothing beats the feeling of freedom to be squished on a bumpy long-distance bus, packed like sardines between snoring workers and old men that spit and smoke, as we watch the beautiful landscape change and unfold. The road feels like home.

It took us two days to hike the Tiger Leaping Gorge in Yunnan province. The upper trekking road was sparse on people and rich on nature. At times the trail was so narrow I feared that a strong wind may blow me right off. We passed Naxi villages that felt cut off from the rest of the world, with clean family guesthouses that served home-cooked meals. Sometimes when the cliffs were steep, we could see right below to the roaring water and the newly paved road next to it where tour buses shuttled Chinese tourists in and out to see gorge. But up on the high trail we were alone. Sandwiched between the majestic Jade Dragon Snow mountain peaks and the Haba Snow mountain, all we had to do was to follow the road and walk.