Thursday, May 25, 2006
Pictures from China
This is the Bund in Shanghai, which is a famous waterfront. The tower with the ball to the left is the Pearl tower.
One of the first days I was in China we went to visit an ancient town, and we took a boat ride through the city. It was like a little Chinese Venice.
In the same ancient town we saw women wrapping these rice mixtures in leafs, and I thought it was cute.
Me, Katie (Meghan's little sister) and Meghan all went and got massages. They had us wear these ugly pink pj's. I'm way too ticklish for massages, so I was tense the entire time. She kept saying "relax!" and hitting me.
One of my favorite parts of China was the cloth market. This is the tailor who made the second skirt I ordered. When he saw Meghan taking a picture he posed with me. It was amusing.
This is Shanghai from the ca--it has a pretty skyline.
At Century Park, in Shanghai, you can go on motorized boat rides (the boats go about 5 miles an hour).
Meghan, Katie and I went with a tour group to climb Huangshan mountain, and we were the only English speakers in our group. I think we had our tour guide pretty nervous. But one guy in our group (Jason) spoke a little bit of English, so we became friends with him. He was really nice to us and this is him climbing some of the MANY stairs up Huangshan.
This is at the top of one of the peaks after a long day of stairs, stairs and more stiars. We just wanted to be at our hotel!
Our tour group met at 4:30am to watch the sunrise. There was a whole crowd of people at the peak we watched from, but it was really pretty and one of my favorite parts of our trip.
Meghan and I went to the Shanghai zoo and you could walk right into the monkey cage. As Meghan says, Saftey isn't exactly the number one priority in China. It doesn't even make 4 or 5.
This is me and Meg riding the cable car up to the Great Wall.
On the Great Wall we met this old man who spoke a little bit of English and he was trying to sell us these little egg-shaped carvings of the Great Wall. Meghan asked him if he carved them and he said "yes, yes I carve," so we figured "why not," and we each got one and took a picture with him. Well, the eggs feel suspiciously like plastic, and when we got down to the base of the Great Wall we saw them in multiple shops. Suure he carved 'em.
On our last day in Beijing, Meghan and I took the subway/a taxi to the Summer Palace, which was really pretty.
On one of my last days in Shanghai, we went to a fruit and a vegetable market, and this little stand was right outside the vegetable market. We saw stands like this all over the place selling lots of different things.
Overall, it was a really worthwhile trip. I stayed in Shanghai with Meghan's family and then took two seperate three-day-long trips, one to Huangshan with Meghan and Katie (and a Chinese tour group... one night we had to share a room with 5 chinese women) and one to Beijing with just Meghan (we rode the train all night and then stayed in a really nice youth hostel for $7 a night). Some of my favorite things to see were everyday life things. I really liked seeing the streets busy with bike riders (they often have someone sitting on the back of the bike--sometimes two or three people per bike), the markets, the little kids peeing on the side of the streets, and the food vendors on the side of the road. I also saw a lot of tourist-y things like the Great Wall, Summer Palace, Tian'amen Square, the Forbidden City, the Shanghai zoo, the Bund, Century Park, the Shanghai art museum, Huangshan, and a lot of places around Shanghai. It was quite an adventure. I even used a squatter, which is the Chinese version of a toilet. The name is pretty self-explanatory. Make sure to carry your own toilet paper. The food was . . . tolerable. I didn't love it, and I didn't hate it, but I prefer American food (embarrassing, but true). I think my favorite meal of the entire trip was Grandma's Kitchen in Beijing. It's this completely American restaurant, and after a long day of walking around Beijing it was delicious. I also experienced a lot of different forms of transportation including boat rides, rickshaw rides, motorized rickshaws, taxis, trains, cable cars, bikes, 4 person bikes, subways, and many hours on buses. Anyway, that's just kind of a brief overview of my trip.