On Cha Gan and Goodbyes

Manzhouli, China: Part 8 of 10

It was farewell to Manzhouli and some friends. Half of the contingents went back to Beijing this morning, while the other half, stayed in Manzhouli. We were one of those who stayed behind.

We went to visit Cha Gan Lake in the morning. As per our ever-patient guide, Jasmine, Cha Gan in English means “disappear”. True enough, we went to a green, flat field, with no sightings of a lake. The area has huge elephant monuments and three sets of gigantic stones far behind. According to one of Chinese guides, these stones symbolize the three stages of marriage – Bronze, Silver, and Gold. There are Chinese characters carved on these stones, which I pressume, say more about the stages of marriage.

Most of our contingent went to the bronze rock and climbed up. It was Reggie, Happy, and me at first, then the rest followed. It felt nice to be up there. Haha! πŸ™‚

Happy and Me with Our Indonesian Friends

Patty and Me with Our Singaporean Friends

After Cha Gan, we went back to our hotel for lunch. The rest of the group went to KFC but I decided to take the hotel lunch instead since eating in an American fastfood in the China-Russian-Mongolian border was the last thing on my mind. The food had to be either of the three.

There was a sad goodbye for the contingents who flew back to Beijing but I wasn’t able to join this because I had to do an important long-distance call, which took me about an hour. As I’ve said in my first blog entry about Manzhouli, the people in this part of China speak only Chinese or Russian. I couldn’t find a Chinese-English guide, so I went into action words, doing all those funny gestures just to make them understand that I needed to make call. Haha! It was an experience that I will always remember. πŸ™‚

The afternoon was free for us so our group went to a nearby shopping mall. There wasn’t much to shop in Manzhouli except those matryoshka dolls and some Russian artworks. All the other products are very much the same as the ones in Beijing. I did buy a few of the Russian products.

Kublai Khan Products – Very Mongolian, Made in China πŸ™‚ (Photo by Edwin)

We had another cultural show tonight. Again, it was a mixed Chinese-Russian performance. The food was terrible. I couldn’t decipher the taste of some of them. I think the dinner tonight led me to have this stomach problem that I am experiencing now.

The remaining contingents are having a noodle party on the hall of the 20th floor (they’re just outside), which I opted not to join as I have to visit the loo once in a while.

This is really bad…

Cha Gan Lake – Bronze Marriage Rock

Happy and Me with a Smiling Manzhouli Local (Photo from Happy)

More of Chinese During the Last Cultural Show in Manzhouli (Photo by Edwin)

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