On October 13, a tourist identified only by his surname, Yu, got separated from his tour group at the Forbidden City in Beijing, and decided his only course of action was to walk back to his home in Zhejiang Province, 1,500 km away.
The 73-year-old man walked for six days, covering more than 100 km, before being discovered by authorities in Tianjin. Using the sun to navigate his way homeward, Yu slept on the side of the road whenever he got tired, and used the little money he had to buy food when he was hungry. When police found him, he appeared to be in a state of heavy confusion.
According to Sohu, The Zhejiang pensioner was poorly educated and had difficulty reading and writing. Furthermore, he spoke a dialect specific to his home in Rui’an county in Zhejiang Province, and had problems understanding standard Putonghua, which would explain why he did not seek out help before resorting to going on a long march back home.
His family was initially notified when Yu first went missing; however, their efforts to locate him were in vain. When authorities found him, Yu had no cell phone or form of identification. It is truly a miracle that authorities found him when they did.
Although with that kind of determination, we here at the Shanghaiist personally believe he could have made it home without any help whatsoever.
In the spirit of Mr. Yu, enjoy this throwback:
By Kevin Engle