Global EditionASIA 中文双语Français
Home / Travel

Finding a parking space can drive you crazy!

By Chen Liang | China Daily | Updated: 2023-12-09 10:08
Share - WeChat

Self-driving is pleasant and easy in Guizhou, as the southwestern province is known for its well-developed expressway system and scarce traffic.

But it doesn't mean that there are no challenges.

Though most towns in the province on the hilly Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau offer little in terms of parking space, I never realized that finding a spot to leave my vehicle could be such a problem until I drove to a hotel in Kaiyang county.

It was around 9 o'clock on a Saturday evening in September. We had dinner in Kaiyang, a county about 80 kilometers north of Guiyang, the provincial capital, after driving several hours and visiting several sites en route.

The hotel we booked is supposed to be one of the best in town. Following my navigation app, I drove to the front of the hotel and saw its neon sign.

I then tried to drive into the parking area right in the front of the hotel, but the one-lane road led to the exit, not the entrance.

So I let one of my friends out of the car to check into the hotel.

I drove toward the entrance following the navigation.

I turned right and drove along a street on one side of the hotel for 300 or 400 meters and passed two or three high-rise buildings, before I turned right onto a side lane running parallel to the street and saw the toll booth at the entrance of the big complex in which the hotel is located.

My rental car is brand-new, without a front license plate. So the parking system couldn't recognize my car. So, I got out of the vehicle and tried to find a QR code on the toll booth so that I could scan the code to enter the parking lot.

It was there, a piece of paper in a plastic package. Because of being exposed to the elements, however, the code was blurry and unreadable for my mobile phone. I tried a couple of times, but failed.

So I called my friend in the hotel lobby. The receptionist called a man who seemed responsible for the parking lot. He came, scanned the code with his mobile phone, but that failed too. He didn't have the key to open the tollgate for our car.

I was tired and weary. Then the man suggested me to reverse a dozen meters or so and turn onto a ramp of a building. "It will lead you to the parking lot on top of the buildings," he said. "All the buildings in the compound are connected and so are their rooftop parking lots."

He found a colleague at the tollgate of the rooftop parking lot and explained our situation. The gate then opened and after several turns, I found myself driving on top of a building, then on top of another. But where is the building in which the hotel is located?

I was confused and called my friend again. He told me the hotel is on the opposite side of a bank, "look for the neon sign of the bank". Finally, I saw the sign and doors of two lifts.

I stopped the car and another friend left to go and meet our friend in the hotel lobby. A couple of minutes later, he returned and told me that he descended to the floor supposed to be the lobby and found a construction site in pitch darkness. "It's a scary void," he said.

I was desperate, and called my friend and asked him to check with the receptionist again. He did and called back. "There is no lift connecting the hotel with the rooftop parking lot," he informed us.

So we decided to cancel our online booking and found another hotel with easier access to parking.

But as I tried to leave the parking lot, no one could be found to open the tollgate for our car. We were truly stuck in the parking lot!

I manically beeped the horn, and my friend rushed into the compound and yelled for help.

Ten minutes later, he returned with the attendant who had been playing mahjong with his friends.

We managed to check into another hotel at 11 pm.

Most Popular
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349