May Day!

 No, no emergency.  Just a special day here.  Coincidentally my first day is the first of May.  It’s the equivalent of the Fourth of July in America.  I pass by several bursts of fireworks during the day and lots of confetti from firecrackers on the streets.

I take National Highway G101 for the first forty miles before seeing a frontage road, County X002 that I take for the next twenty where a local helps me find a room.  While there’s some traffic, it’s much less than the National Highway.  I also get to pass by half a dozen old villages.  It’s really interesting to see a mix of the old and new as the country modernizes.  Old thatch brooms and decades old bicycles mixed with new Hyundais, Buicks, and VWs.

The traffic on the national highway is a nightmare, although I think it’s a product of the holiday.  For the first twenty miles out of Beijing the cars are slowing me down.  Only one major wrong turn, which lost me maybe a mile.

Anyway, the north end of Beijing is much more pleasant than the south was last year.  My throat and sinuses hurt a little from the pollution, though.

One funny thing that happened:  a few guys on the side of the road gave me a “heeeellllooo!.  I responded with a “neee haooooo!”  The woman on the electric scooter started to smile.  Then I said it to her and it almost made her crash from laughter.

Looking forward to reaching the Summer Palace tomorrow.  Only five or six miles on the highway.  I’m hoping that the state road I’ve chosen is as quiet as the county road I rode today.  Maybe I won’t make it tomorrow.  It’s 60 miles in the mountains.

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