A small group of Chinese locals stared as two foreigners departed on a raft on a river in Guilin. The wonder was, perhaps, the possibility of two female Asians traveling without fear and without care, but brimming with curiosity and fascination. We wondered, too, as everybody was friendly and accommodating, despite being without a clue on the words exchanged among these men, the words uttered between us two.

Everybody agreed, however, that it was a splendid day, the karst mountains were something they were proud of, and as two female foreigners took photos and breathed the cool, autumn air, it didn’t matter that we were different, even when the waters pulled us away, setting us apart, without saying goodbye.


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