Before we set off we had to pick some climbing shoes but we could only find one pair big enough, this seems to happen a lot as most Chinese people have small feet. I mentioned this to Sam and he said English people have bigger everything, i wasn't sure if it was a compliment or an insult but decided on the former and swaggered out to the scooters. We jumped on the back and headed for the rocks. We stopped along the way to buy some steam dumplings for breakfast which Sam explained was slang for ladies boobydoos (that's what my sister calls them).
We arrived at the Kasts and Sam got the climbing gear ready. I sat staring up at the giant vertical wall in front of me, noting the lack of multi coloured knobbly bits to grab hold of, and wondering how I was going to find the energy to climb it, It looked impossible.
I started off slowly, it was a great feeling scaling such a huge wall of rock, the hard part was finding somewhere to put your feet and hands, it required a lot of stretching and feeling around but it felt fantastic when I reached the top. I let out a huge whoop and turned to look down on the tree tops and the caves in the distance. Then abseiled down to the ground with giant leaps. As soon as I hit the bottom my tiredness hit me, I was drenched in sweat and shaking, i felt like i was going to faint. I sat on a rock and watched Steve. All to soon it was time for me to do the next climb which was even harder. This time I was much slower, my arms were shaking and I struggled to pull my weight, I really should cut down on the noodles. I missed a couple of times and fell, but Sam had hold of a safety line so I only fell a little, but it was always at the hardest parts and I would have to start it again. I reached the top but I was knackered and having Sam having to hold my weight several times it didn't feel as much as an a achievement as the first one. Again I got to the bottom and felt like s***.
While I was watching Steve a long Snake slithered down the wall and into one of the cracks. I asked Sam if it was poisonous,"we have some" he said, "so was that one of them?" he just laughed. Im pretty sure that even if the bite couldn't killI you it still wouldn't be pleasant climbing a wall with a snake clamped to me. I knew there was no way I could make it up the third and hardest climb but everyone willed me on and after a little rest I set off. I was so busy worrying about not having any energy that i had forgotten all about the snake. I was struggling big time letting out big grunts as I tried to hall myself up, with everything i had, my arms were really hurting and I could barely hold on. I was sweating so much I thought I would just slide straight down the wall. I had barely made it halfway when Sam shouted, and actually sounded concerned. Apparently my hand was in the hole the snake was. Without thinking I whipped it out as soon as I registered what he had said and instantly fell dangling on the safety rope. Everybody thought it was hilarious - ******ers.
I really wanted to stop I couldn't hold myself on the wall let alone climb. I kept shouting that I'd had enough and couldn't do it. But everyone was really willing me on. I struggled on but eventually I just couldn't take it anymore and Sam lowered me down. I was really gutted I couldn't do it. And even more annoyed that It was my fault for going out all night. I vowed not to drink anymore, well at least not in Yangshuo while there was so much else to do.
Afterwards Sam took us to the dragon cave. Inside there were huge stalagmites and stalactites and they all had names. But none of them looked anything like their names, i tried squinting my eyes but quickly stopped in case our guide thought i was taking the piss. My favourite were the ones that looked like boobydoos and they had named it something like mothers milk.
At the end there was a hot spring and mud bath which was sooo nice after my exhausting morning.
We caught a bus back to Sams and had a nap. In the evening Sam recommended a Chinese restaurant in town which turned out to be great. The food was delicious and cheap and our table on the balcony had a great view of the busy street below. I decided to break my vowel of no alcohol - I had gone a whole half a day and it was only one.