Brunch in the bamboo cafe
Eager to get off campus before the second training course started, we all headed out of town for a walk. We caught the bus in the direction Da Zhai (east of Simao), getting off at the new campus to inspect the building work. Can't see it being ready in 3 weeks but who knows. Maybe they're planning on bringing in a few more thousand builders in the near future. We had some noodles and a drink in a roadside cafe catering for the workers. Three generations of women run the cafe where over 70 workers come for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It took them a day to construct the shelter, which is made from bamboo and plastic. It  might look temporary but it wouldn't surprise me if it's still standing in years to come, catering for the student market instead.

Freda, Edie and Lesley at Xi Ma He.
Xi Ma He (Wash Horse Lake) is an old haunt that's changed a lot over the years - the amusement park has gone, the grotty old pool has been replaced with a grotty new pool, the rows of little shops and snack shacks have been replaced by a pretty paved walkway that delivers visitors to the horses on the lakeside. It's the first time the water has been high enough to cover their ugly, concrete bases. We joined a string of out-of-towners having their photos taken by the knight washing his white horse [centre/back]. We suspect the other three equine imposters were added later to liven the scene up a bit as they have a merry-go-round feel that doesn't match the original statue.

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