Day 3: 14 Hour Plane Ride or 14 Hour Car Ride…?

…today is the day for the car trip. I do not know any details besides that it was some ancient town or something. I do not know how far or how long it was going to take. I guess its better that way. Knowing how far gets you a little antsy throughout the entire trip.
…we got some snacks from the 7-11, yes the 7-11. What is up with these American corporations taking over the world? I saw a Pizza Hut, Papa Johns, KFC, and of course McDonald’s. Can I order a Big Mac, hold the pickles and dog please. haha. I guess it helps for American travelers to have something to be familiar with when they are overseas. As I think about it, it works both ways. Chinese travelers to the US can associate the same way and feel just as comfortable.
…had a what looked like a ham and cheese sandwich. It looked a little too uniform and perfect to made by human hands. It taste so so and still kinda bland but a breakfast is a breakfast I guess. Snaked on what it looked like sunflower seeds. The bag was fairly unassuming. It tasted somewhat weird at first but it ended up tasting ok after a few. The seeds were not uniform like I am used to. Either they are the b-squad seeds or different species or whatever used in the US. There was some peanut better cookies that were alright as well.

The ham and cheese sandwich with what I assume is like a butter grilled outside with some dry onions.

…I had my iPhone and iPod, so I think I can survive a fairly long drive. I mean, my iPhone isn’t on 3G and in airport mode, so it should last forever.
..typical car drive. But it was kinda dicey. The drivers here use their horns and high beams a lot. But its different way of using them in the states. Here, it is used to warn drivers you are in the lane and to remind them you’re coming and in the lane. In the US, or should I say Southern California, use it as a “Eff You, learn how to driver you idiot.” It takes a little getting used to to train yourself there isn’t any cruel intentions behind the high beams and horn honking.
…the difference between our two drivers was night and day. The main guy, the head honcho at the factory I visited yesterday, drives a little too semi nauseating. He would accelerate and decelerate, on and off, so that the car would jerk forward and backwards. Along with this, he would make sharp lane changes and what not. I got used to it but it hard to nap when you’re consistently being jerked awake.
…on the other hand, his girlfriend was a little bit more smoother but she would drive slower than the speed limit. Mind you, the speed limit was 100km/h and as far as I know 120km/h is 80mph. I don’t ever drive slower than 80mph in the U.S. So that was harder to get used to. But hey, I cannot complain. I am in other country and you gotta let the natives guide you.
…nothing too interesting to say about a car ride for hours. What I did not understand was in certain fields that look like farms, or rice patties, fires were being deliberately started. Who knows? Really Anyone know? I know from a scientific standpoint is that after a fire or when the land is burnt, the next set of crops grow better. That would be good but not for California with the land slides. That’s the only thing I can think of. If someone knows, please share.

One of many rest stops/restaurants/stores.

…I kept myself busy with Heidi, Frosty, and Frank podcasts and of course music. I started listening to The Twit podcast again as well. I miss hearing Leo Laporte’s voice. Its very comforting and love the knowledge I get from the podcast, or should I say netcast. A term Leo Laporte coined when Apple was being dicks about saying they own the word “pod.” I do love that he is a fan of Windows 7. I am a huge fan of the OS and never adopted a Microsoft OS early because they were all crap until this one. I stayed on Windows 2000 for almost 3 years before I even touched XP. I can’t wait to get my free copy of Windows 7 Ultimate Professional edition. Saved me $200-300 and I don’t have to worry about going back to XP when the RC1 I am running now is done in April.
…we finally got dinner at some random rest stop. When I say random, I totally means RANDOM. It is like one of those random diners in some random small town in the midwest. Actually more like a truck stop. Those things are kinda effy. Oh yeah, rest stops here sometimes have a gas station, Sinopec, or have a random store and/or random kinda run down restaurant. I wanna say it was around 6 or 7PM and we have been on the road since 8:30AM. I am not going to judge but something comparable would be if a greasy spoon, hole in the wall, was combined with a D rated Chinese restaurant in Rolling Heights. I say “D” because I’ve eaten at “C” rated Chinese dim sum, and they are good. It is usually not the food that is bad but the cleanliness. Quality of food > Cleanliness especially in Chinese restaurants. There was this dead fly on the window sill still buzzing really loud. Kinda made me want to eat quickly and get the heck out of there.


Scrambled eggs with jalapenos, tomato and egg soup, braised pork belly, and something else. I can’t remember if its chicken or pork. There is a running theme of eggs and pork in a few days of my travels

…on the road again. Got lost. Finally arrived at the hotel around 10:30PM. The best part was that the hotel was pretty nice and the room was much better. The room was much larger than the room we have in Shenzhen. I’ll have photos and such tomorrow. After some internetting, I knocked out.
I seriously do not know which I would prefer, the plane or a car.

About Anh Nguyen

Anh Nguyen is a Los Angeles based freelance photographer. Over the past six years, he has covered various concerts, movie premieres, red carpets, parties, and events. A southern California native, Anh attended UCLA and holds a Bachelor's degree in Philosophy and a minor in Accounting. In addition to photography, he is currently pursuing his license as a CPA and hopes to go law school. Adding to his many interests, Anh also loves to cook and has worked as a line cook for Food Network's celebrity chef Scott Conant's restaurant, Scarpetta, in Beverly Hills.