Shanghai Nights

Shanghai Travel Blog

 › entry 9 of 17 › view all entries

We woke up to the lovely sound of our Ma Ma tapping on our door telling us that it was time to get up. I took a quick "military shower". The kind where you only have about 45 seconds of hot water so you turn the faucet on, rinse and turn off. Then shampoo, turn faucet on, rinse, turn off. Condition, rinse, off, etc. Not the ideal shower but what can you do! The bathroom set up was interesting as well. One big open room with the shower on the wall (no curtain), a sink and toilet and some unidentified apparatus that I can only assume is some sort of urinal. Nothing like I have ever seen before though. It was about the size of a toilet but with a square basin. It had little holes all around the sides and a drain at the bottom. If my Chinese family were capable of articulating it in English to me what it was, I would have asked. But alas, the mystery remains.

Breakfast was flavorless porridge, some toasted bread things, yogurt that you drink from a cup, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, spicy pickles, tea and chives.

Ma Ma kept putting stuff on our plates and then dumping sugar on it. It was funny because there were things that I wasn't planning on eating but when you dump a ton of sugar on it, it makes it better! So from now on, something you don't like? Just dump a load of sugar on it!

So back to the 17 day infomercial... We headed to a local artist's shop. She demonstrated some paper cutting for us that was pretty damn cool. Like paper dolls but way more intricate. Then we got to make one. We made the character for double happiness. Kitty said that at her wedding they hung that symbol up everywhere around the room. Then the woman demonstrated a painting for us. She painted a print of two pandas and some bamboo. It was really neat how fast she was able to do it. Then of course with our special P2P discount, just for us, we were able to shop around her house. The prints were very bright and colorful. I was a sucker and ended up buying a few for presents. No self-control.


We went back to Ma Ma's house for lunch at 10:30 and, yes she made us eat lunch at 10:30.

Some rice with egg mixed in. Peanuts with sugar all over them, some bread stuff and a sort of flatbread with lettuce and cabbage sandwiched between it. I snuck granola bar number 2 in after we left. We had about 30 minutes before we had to leave, so we opted against another nap which Ma Ma suggested and sat down on the couch with the family. Ma Ma showed us some photos and we noticed in them that she was doing the paper cutting just like the artist from this morning. So we pointed it out and she ran to get her paper so show us. She made each of us a beautiful butterfly cut out. I pressed it in the book I am reading and I hope I can find a frame for it when I get home.


We said goodbye to Ma Ma and headed for the airport.

Our plane was pretty roomy and nice. The problem was that our flight couldn’t take off because of weather in Shanghai so we were stuck on the tarmac sweating for over an hour waiting to leave. There was no air and I thought I was going to pass out. At one point I did nod off for a few minutes but Jill woke me up to comment about the Twilight book she is reading. Oh Edward, if only you were real... sigh! The TV's on the plane were teaching the Chinese about the western ways. I watched one that was teaching about "white collar jobs" or "brain jobs".

One girls work in an office. Her friend said, "why can't you make a boyfriend?" She work so hard so she don't have time to make a boyfriend. She meet a man on the internet say he work white collar. She write to him she will call the police if he tell a lie. I sorry he say, I am just a constuction worker.

There were a few others. Another one taught about school children with disabilities.


A few hours later and we touched down in Shanghai. All I have to say is holy crap. This city is huge! This place makes New York look like Westford, Massachusetts. 19 million people with residence here and other who are not counted. Skyscrapers like you wouldn't believe and crazy traffic. We went straight to dinner on the river bank. The restaurant was pretty nice and had a great view of the river and the skyline.

The waitresses were pretty mean though. Jill asked for more pork and she said, "no!" Then she asked for more Coke and she walked away. It reminded me of the Soup Nazi on Seinfeld. "No soup for you!"


After dinner we walked outside to the river where it had grown dark and all the lights of the city were in full force. I took some photos but I don't think they can even do the sight justice. It was like looking at the Vegas strip only 50 times bigger. There were lights on every building, every boat, every tree. It was amazing! Once again we were celebrities. All the Chinese tourists were asking to take their picture with us. I wish we had more time there to spend walking around but it was getting late and we had to head to the hotel.

Rainbow hotel #2. Best hotel so far! Finally some water pressure and comfortable blankets. We each have a double bed and two fluffy pillows. The other good news about this hotel is the rooftop bar that we stumbled upon. After bed checks Jill, Cheryl and I headed up there for a quick beer. Jill and I embraced the local culture and ordered a Tiger Beer on tap. (Tasted like Bud Light to me). Cheryl ordered an "Around the World". It had about 8 different liquors in it with a splash of pineapple juice. We ended up staying for a little over an hour. The world cup was on and all the Chinese men were routing for Japan. There were two Filipino girls singing on stage but no one was paying any attention to them. Jill, Cheryl and I started cheering and clapping for them. One of them came over and talked to us and took our requests. Jill requested a ton of songs and they brought her up on stage to sing. It was hysterical. Time was getting late so we decided to head to bed. Waking up in the morning was reminiscent of my college days because my hair and my pillow reeked of cigarette smoke.


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photo by: Chokk