Sunday October 19, 2014
Friday was a banner day. First of all it was Jocelyn’s 24th birthday and we celebrated by making a few of her favorite meals including grilled cheese sandwiches. In the evening we met several touring cyclists’ friends at the local German restaurant for dinner. While there our travel agent, Svetlana Frank appeared with flowers for Jocelyn, a gift, and the best gift of all – our passports with China visas! We have waited three weeks for this moment. Also stamped in our passport is the required Kyrgyzstan immigration registration stamp. Now we can successfully exit Kyrgyzstan and enter China. Along with this our real estate agent who we rented the apartment from appeared with more flowers and invited us to join her and her husband and Svetlana for a celebratory drink.
Svetlana has been a great help. Normally a China visa is obtained from Bishkek which is about a 12 hour taxi ride north. She was able to take all our visa information and have it flown there to a Chinese company who then processed the paperwork. She also speaks excellent English and helped us move into an apartment. We moved out yesterday and biked to a local hotel in preparation of a 10 hour bus ride today to Kashgar, China. Svetlana can be reached at http://firstname.lastname@example.org
Jocelyn has spent the last few weeks learning Chinese along with planning a good route to take advantage of many areas we wish to visit with our allocated 30 days. We can extend the visa time if needed and will be taking trains through the sparse desert areas. She makes it easy for me. All that I have to do is cycle. She has become quite the tour leader and has a good future.