New Friends and a Traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony
Shanghai Travel Blog› entry 3 of 22 › view all entries
This morning we awoke at around 5:30 am; our bodies haven't completely adjusted to the time change. As I crawled down the steps from our loft bed, I realized that my feet were aching and my hips and thighs weren't working properly either. The endless walking that we made our bodies perform on the previous day had come back to haunt us! Therefore, as we exited our hotel this morning, we headed straight for the line of taxis, rather than in the direction of the subway. Our taxi driver pulled in fron of Yu Gardens and Bazaar, which was our first stop for the day. We first entered the Bazaar, which consists of shops that peddle everything from tourist souvenirs to traditional medicines beneath fanciful old-style Chinese roofs.
We then strolled across the famous zigzag bridge that leads to the Huxingting Teahouse. The zigzag design protects the structure, since Chinese people believe that evil spirits can only travel in straight lines and are unable to turn corners. As Jason and I were posing for a picture along the bridge, a Chinese woman asked us to take a picture with her son. We don't know whether it was the blonde hair, the blue eyes, or simply the fact that we were Americans, but we must have been a rarity in her eyes if she had to get a picture of us!
Before leaving the Bazaar, we entered the Yu Gardens scenic area, which is a breath-taking Chinese garden neatly divided into six sections, turning the ancient garden into a mazelike structure.
At about 2:30, we were in another taxi and on our way to the pleasantly landscaped People's Park. As we were about to enter to famous park, we were stopped by a group of 4 Chinese college students who had studied English for years and were eager to practice conversing with a couple of Americans. We learned their American names: Lisay, David, Daniel, and Peter. We spoke with them for a few minutes outside of People's Park. and before we knew it, they had invited us to go experience a traditional Chinese tea ceremony with them, which was such a memorable experience.
We also engaged in some fun and interesting conversations with the four students during the couple of hours we spent together.
Jason and I then strolled through People's Park and down Nanjing Lu West for a couple of miles before reaching the Shanghai Center, where we bought tickets for an acrobatic show the following evening. We ended the evening by enjoying tea, noodles, and dumplings at a restaurant across the street from the Shanghai Center.