our 3rd day in xian started out by our trip to the "big wild goose pagoda" there was a nice park around the actual pagoda complex that was very pleasant to stroll around. inside, the pagoda itself was closed for renovation, not an uncommon occurrence around here. once again, for the 5th time, we, well daph was asked to take a picture with a local. i think they also ask me to be in it so not to hurt my feelings? anytime someone asks us for a picture i give them my camera also so we can document these incidences. we had an early train to catch that would take 18 hours to our next destination. most tourists doing this would fly 2 hours but we don't. colonel sanders from kentucky was calling our name and we had a little bite there before our train. the train was an old one, and the locals are ridiculous in their mad attempt to get on the train. the seats/beds are assigned yet they push, run, yell just to get on the train? our new friend, deng zhen lin, that we met on the train told us they do this because they don't want to miss the train!! ,deng zhen lin, a business student from tianjin university, was going to chengdu to visit a friend. we talked with him for some time but every 90 seconds or so our conversation would be interrupted due to the train entering a tunnel. tunnel after tunnel, unable to hear your own voice when inside made it a long conversation. he did manage to teach us our 2nd chinese card game. we played a few hands and then at 10pm the lights went out and we hit the bunk.
we arrived in chengdu after the night train and checked out our hostel, sim's cozy garden. we went to wenshu temple where we went to our first vegetarian (non-vegetarian) restaurant. we explored the gardens which were nice. we walked around chengdu and arrived at trust mart, a local 6 floor supercenter. outside they were giving away free coke tastings, so we joined in and downed two of them. daphna's was nice and cold, mine was deliciously warm. we went back to the hostel and had a local (mexican) dish. scrmbled eggs and tomatoes and our first of many spicy eggplant with garlic.