I LOVE THIS TRIP! The first day.

Qingdao Travel Blog

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at the bridge thing during the day, hiding behind that really chinesey building because it was really windy
We left Beijing for Qingdao on Fri night the 14th, and we took the 10:50pm train. We thought, well at least I thought I could just get some sleep on the train... oh, have I mentioned we took the hard seaters? Yes, so, for the entire 8-hour train ride, we were on SEATS. None of us could really fall asleep, no matter how hard we tried. The train was just super uncomfortable. I was glad I brought my bright yellow pillow with me. It actually helped me semi-fell asleep for an hour or so.
Anyways, despite the horrible sleeping environment on the train, I can tell everyone was excited and happy about going on this trip. I decidedly only invited 5 other ppl because I really don't want this to be a big group thing, unlike skiing.
on the boat. IT WAS FREEEEEZING and windy.
It actually worked out perfectly, as the train grouped the seats into 4's and 6's, and we can split cabs evenly, too - 3 and 3. Anyways. So, on the trip, there were me, Alex, Hyunji, Vincent, Sam and MJ. IT was the perfect combination, not just gender ratio wise, but also the personalities and hence the dynamics.
Anyways, back to the train, we didn't really do anything on the train there, except snacking on our FULL table of snacks. It tasted AND looked awesome. Other ppl were eying use because we really did have a lot of food on the table.
So. Running on 2 hours of horrible sleep, we arrived at Qingdao at 7 in the morning. Got off the train and it was COOOLLLLDDD. I got a little nervous because I just realized I didn't write down the hostel's number and address, but luckily my phone stored EVERY SINGLE call I made.
GROUP HUG! in the temple.
Called the hostel, told the person there to talk to our cab driver. Our hostel wasn't so far from the train train. The cab ride was only... maybe 20 RMB? Well, cabs there started at 5 or 7. Real cheap.
Our hostel is located in the "old city district" 老城区, a really local neighbor, which was good. We checked in and they told us we couldn't get the 7-ppl room until noon. We just wanted to settle down so we paid 10RMB more, 35RMB/night, to get the 8-ppl room, which turned out to be fine because at least I appreciated some space. The bed was comfy-er than my dorm's bed, actually, and the pillow was fine as well. The room was definitely not newly renovated, but it looked decent and clean. Heat wasn't really heating until half an hour later, tho.
So, we decided to take a power nap.
Lol this pic can totally be a cover for some album. Walking frm the church to the supposedly tsingdao beer sign.
We walked into the room at around 8, and we thought we'd wake up at 930 and begin our day. I think Vincent set his alarm clock and we all passed out like babies. Then, as we were all sleeping, I was dreaming like usual. By the end of the dream (I don't even rmb what I dreamed about), I was thinking in my sleep/dream (ok, admit it, you think when you are dreaming, too), I was thinking, "hmm, that was an elaborate and long dream. Why is my dream so long? HAs it only been an hour?" Then I decided to wake up and check the time... it was 11:06am!! I jumped up and woke everyone up. I was a lil upset because I didn't want to waste time sleeping in the morning, but I guess we really needed the 3-hr nap. We got ready by noon and left the hostel. Walked around our hostel and found this �'骨place and walked in. There were only three choices of dishes and nothing was especially appealing. So 3 mins after we walked into the restaurant, we walked right back out. Mindya, that was a small restuarant and everyone was looking at us.
Anyways, we found this hand-made dumplings place and food was cheap and good. Wasn't especially filling but it lasted us a while. We then walked around neightborhood, passed by a local market which definitely brought back memories of HK markets. It was really fun, we got to see the real Qingdao. After just strolling by the market, we went to this Catholic Church which charged 2.5RMB for a not pretty visit. You know, churches usually generate a sense of reveration; not this one, it wasn't pretty at all. We hung around there for a bit, and then headed towards the water. Took us a good 15 mins to get to the water (QD is really not big at all; now that I'm used to the size of BJ, being in QD is easy to get around). We weren't sure what we should be looking, but we spent a good deal of time at an underground market, Alex looking at pearl necklaces and earrings, and we spent more time looking at lighters and these magnetic bullet-looking objects. They were fun; I bought a pair.
Then, finally back on track towards the water, we strolled around at the 棧橋, and with a really chinesey building at the end of the bridge. I really wasn't sure what I was looking at, but it was supposed to be THE symbol of QD and so we went and took lotsa pics. Then we went on the 10RMB tour, which the rep claimed to be 40-mins long and would be at these 10+sites. Vincent was really sketched out but we went on it anyways. So, we took a bus of that travel "agency" to the pier, and got on the boat. Well, quoting MJ, the ppl won't run away with the money, but they'd just give up REALLY DISCOUNTED service, which was exactly true. We were on the boat for 10 mins, and passed by something, which I still had no idea what they were. The tour guide was basically non-functional because I basically still don't know WHAT her face looked like. 15 mins and many pics of water later, we got bck on the bus and the "tour guide" said that we got to visit a �'族博物馆 for free. It turned out to be a 天后庙, and forcing you to pray to the goddess and 求籤. Vincent found that distasteful and I won't worship another goddess for a free fortune telling, which I could have just done by myself. Despite the hard-selling, the temple itself, I must say, was really pretty.
Then, we thought we'd want to go to the beer brewery place, which we had NO IDEA where it SHOULD be. We thought we could just walk towards the big QD啤�'sign, but it turned out to be just a HUGE billboard on top of a secondary school (how ridiculous). By that time we were all cold and exhausted, and so we decided to go back to the hostel and get nice and clean for dinner and night out. I'm not exaggerating when we were DESPARATE for 2 cabs. It really took us a WHILE to get a cab. I can't emphasize the difficulty more. It really took us at LEAST half an hour, after chasing after the bus w/o knowing where the bus stop was, and standing on the street almost getting run over, we finally got home.
We showered, got dressed, and dressed up, and everyone looking really pretty (omg, I could really die for guys in blazers. I think thats a really hot look) and the girls, the three of us basically had the same style on - a large shoulder shirt, mini skirts, tights and same boots. =-D. It was fun. Vincent and Sam had on blazers and a nice shirt underneath, and just pants/jeans. MJ was slightly less dressy, but he did have a nice sweater on and jeans. Everyone was cute, I must say.
Then, its finally time for some beeeeeeeeer! We just went downstairs to the hostel bar/restaurant/cafe/lounge and sat for a lil bit, drank some beer, played some poker, I did my love-telling card game, and we then left for DINNER!
I asked the cab driver on our way from the train station to the hostel where a good place to eat would be. He recommended 雲霄路and that was where we went. WE just know that we wanted seafood, and so we walked into a seafood restaurant. Alex and I went down to the water tanks and chose what seafood we wanted. We weren't even thinking the prices or how much we ordered when we ordered, and we ordered a LOT. Food was goooooooooooood. It was heavenly. I missed seafood sooo much! I think we all enjoyed the dinner. It wasn't stuffing, but filling, which was good, and none of us had diahearrea afterwards. lol.
Then, we wanted to head out to the bars. At first we went to the wrong directions, and then I called the hostel to ask them where we could go at night. He said, well, people don't usually go out at night except to the bars. I thought to myself, "DUH! go on." and he told me to go to 香港中路. I love the name already. haha.
Shall talk more about the WONDERFUL dinner. Class tmr morning.
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at the bridge thing during the day…
at the bridge thing during the da…
on the boat. IT WAS FREEEEEZING an…
on the boat. IT WAS FREEEEEZING a…
GROUP HUG! in the temple.
GROUP HUG! in the temple.
Lol this pic can totally be a cove…
Lol this pic can totally be a cov…
photo by: aleksflower