In Sanya – Final Thoughts

Sanya Bayt

Sanya Bay

Alright, I could pretend like the week and a half since we returned from Sanya was used to properly reflect on the vacation before I post final thoughts about China’s only tropical destination. But that would be a lie.

Every time I go on vacation I think to myself, “Hey, why the hell am I not doing this ALL the time. This is great! Problems are so far away. The air is fresh. The food it fantastic. Life is moving at a pace I am entirely comfortable with.” Then I get home — load up the 200+ e-mails, overflowing RSS reader, and super-long task list — and I remember why one week a year off(line) is such a challenge.

I left off last time complaining about the DaDongHai beach and saying I was going down for a sunset swim. We nixed the swim and just walked along the beach admiring the sunset. Eventually we tracked down the location where we got married (three palms in a bit of a V-shape) and reflected on that hectic day and the sometimes hectic, but mostly wonderful two years that have followed.

A horse, of coruse, at sunset in Sanya

A horse, of coruse, at sunset in Sanya

The next day was our anniversary and for dinner we had made reservations at a hotel in the Da Dong Hai area called the Resort Intime Sanya. The hotel has a nightly BBQ buffet and Maggie loves buffets (anyone that’s met me is probably thinking, “and what, you don’t tubby?” – and they’d be right, but man, the girl LOVES buffets).

The food was great. Though the standard buffet stuff was mediocre (for the 150RMB/person price tag at least), the long line of BBQs grilling and frying up all the meat and seafood your heart could desire balanced it out. Dining is all outside, set around a large koi pond that features a small stage in its center that was playing host to a (what appeared to be Filipino) duet performing covers of soft-rock hits in Chinese, Russian and English.

Fishing Boats & Sanya Sunset

Fishing Boats & Sanya Sunset

For the last couple days in Sanya we basically just chillaxed. Before heading down we had made plans to visit some of the typical tourist trappings (Monkey Island, Nantian Hot Springs, ethnic villages, etc.), but in the end we agreed that chilling out by the sea was far more appealing. It was a vacation at all, and I was doing my best to momentarily forget about planning, scheduling, crowds, etc.

Our last night in Sanya we decided to grab a bite at a Western restaurant just outside where we were staying. The place, Fat Daddy’s, is run by an expat named Sheldon who made the move down to Sanya a few years ago after spending a number in Shanghai. While there I happened to run into Mario Cavolo, a speaker and trainer who also runs the Sanya Expat site.

I chatted to both about what life was like as an expat living down there, and I gotta say – it’s appealing – but more on that later.

For now, I need to resume the mass game of “catch-up” I’ve been playing for the past week and a half. Seriously, why can’t the world stop while I’m on vacation?

Maggie @ Sanya Bay sunset

Maggie @ Sanya Bay sunset

Palms and the Sunset

Palms and the Sunset

3 Responses

  1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! It really evoked a lot of good memories from the days I spent there. I still lust for the BBQ chicken and warm ocean swims we had there.

  2. What a coincidence ! I met Mario when we were both teaching at the Nokia factory on Su Hong Zhong Lu a few years ago. Still have his card “Vision to Victory”.

    Had a nice (brief) chat over dinner in the company cafeteria, where the food was trucked in by a contractor – meals were so nice I’d often go back for seconds, unlike most places where a dog would sniff it and whimper away.

    He’s a great and inspirational guy.


  3. “I chatted to both about what life was like as an expat living down there, and I gotta say – it’s appealing – but more on that later.

    uh oh. Do I detect the winds of change?


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