Shanghai, a wonderfully poluted city...yet wonderful all the same
Shanghai Travel Blog› entry 2 of 6 › view all entries
Now we are all in the airplane on the way to
We only had one scare on the flight, and that really was only because we were not expecting it. When we were taking off all seemed to be going normally until we actually left the ground. When the Chinese take off they go straight up. I swear, we were all talking about it and we all felt like we were in a space ship heading for space. We went straight up into the air. I felt like I was lying down in my seat. I was looking straight up and could see the front of the plane. Once you get over the initial shock it was actually really fun.
All I can say is “I am not happy.
This morning is really not going very well. I think most of it is because I am so tired of moving constantly. I don’t want to slow down though. After I finally got ready this morning Kassy and I went down to breakfast when we saw one of the guys in my business group in his suit. I was dressed casual because that is what they told me we were wearing last night.
For some reason I can’t stop thinking about Grandma. Wondering if she is alive or not. I have been trying to call dad last night and this morning but our phone won’t let me. It makes me so sad.
So my first stop was the 4th tallest building in the world.
The view from the top of the tower was great, but it could have been better. The pollution here is not as bad as in
After going to the observation deck we had a meeting with a Sinochem. This is a company that is one of the world’s largest chemical shipping companies.
So far, the day is beginning to look up. I have promised myself that I am going to do my best to stop complaining or even thinking about the hotel.
We went to the
By the time we finished the tour we were an hour late for lunch. We were supposed to meet up with the other group and have lunch together, but by the time we got to the restaurant they had all finished eating. They had to wait for us to finish though because we were all to leave together. Oh, I forgot to mention that it was raining when we left the museum and has been pouring ever since.
After eating the plan had been to go to this famous area that is all shopping. We got there, and not many people wanted to shop because it was raining really hard and there would be a lot of walking around outside. So we decided to not shop and we went to the
I have just seen the most amazing show of my entire life. We went to the Shanghai Acrobatic Show. I don’t even know how to describe it. I bought postcards (not to send) with pictures of the show on them, and a book with more. I was bummed that we were not allowed to take pictures, but after it started I could really understand how the flash might endanger someone. They were crawling all over each other, bending in unnatural positions, balancing all sorts of things on different body parts. My favorite performance was with two people all dressed in white, a man and woman. It was so beautiful. I think the image we were supposed to get was that they were making love. The music was beautiful, and live. The couple was kind of dancing. There were two big long flowing ribbons that came down on a cable and the couple would wrap it around a part of their body, then they would swing through the air one person hanging without a rope or anything. It was so beautiful.
The last performance of the night was they had a big cage ball and a man rode around inside it on a motorcycle. It was really cool. I had seen things like it on TV, but this was real!! I thought it was amazing. Then the next thing I knew another person on a motorcycle joining him in the cage. Then another, and another. In the end there were 8 motorcycles in that cage. They were making all kind of incredible patterns, and the lighting being projected on the stage and the backs of the bikes made it all look like some kind of Si Fi thing. The whole time I was afraid that something bad was going to happen. Of course it didn’t.
The other cool performances were done by a group of people who acted like they were having a gang fight. They set of these hoops that the gangs jumped through and did all kind of flips. One man jumped 15 feet and flipped through the hoop. Then they made the hoops revolve and a bunch of them jumped through at the same time. Then later they brought out something like a seesaw and a big platform. Then someone would stand on one end of the seesaw and another would jump on the other end from the platform flinging the other person into the air where they did all kinds of flips and landed on a big bull’s eye. Then they came out again and did more flips on two big trampolines. There was so much more also, but I just can’t explain it all. After it was over I felt exhausted. It was so amazing though. I am so happy I got the opportunity to go.
Last night after we got back to the hotel I was finally able to call my dad. It was nice to talk to him, but I found out that my Grandma had passed away. I cried for a while, but this is so much better for her. I feel better now too, knowing that she is in a better place and I can enjoy the rest of my trip without constantly wondering how she is. When I woke up this morning I had really ugly bags under my eyes.
Kassy and I went down to breakfast kind of early. There was nothing there that looked at all like I could eat it except the watermelon, but I can’t eat watermelon without a benadryl. That would just make me really sleepy and I can’t do that with everything we have to do today.
So we had about ½ hour before we had to meet in the lobby, so Kassy and I went for a walk down the street from the hotel. It is so comfortable outside. It is cool and there was nice breeze. We found a pastry shop we might go back to later. There are people all over the sidewalks. Lots of them are making breakfasts that smell incredible on little carts. I think we might make a habit of getting up a little earlier everyday to go for a walk.
I am going to have a lot to write here because I have not written all day. The first stop we made was to the U.S. Consulate where we had a meeting with a man who works in the chamber of commerce. He talked about his job (which is helping businesses find someone to work with to get their business started in
After that meeting we went to Starbucks because it was in the same building. I got a hot chocolate. It was really good. It actually tasted a little bit different than home, but I think that could be because they used different milk, maybe they used 2% instead of whole or something like that.
Next we went to the Yu (you) Gardens. There really is no garden. It is a big shopping area. Here we met with some students from
After leaving the shopping area (the students with us) we went to another place that was all old buildings, but they were filled with different restaurants, most of them Bistro style, it had all different nationalities of food. For a while we just walked around with Ella looking at the buildings and listening to her imaginings of what it used to be like there. The tour company gave everyone 100 yen to buy or own dinner so the four of us chose a little restaurant that had big squishy chairs. We ordered a small Hawaiian pizza and a hamburger and split it between the 4 of us. It was really good. I liked having a break from the Chinese food. I like the food here but most of it is fried and real heavy and a lot of it has a ton of soy sauce. I don’t like a lot of soy sauce so I really needed a break. After we finished eating we went back to the hotel. Then we had to say good buy to our wonderful Ella. I am really going to miss her so I hope she gets an email account soon so I can keep in touch. It has been a very good day.
We just did the coolest thing. Kassy, Diane and I walked down the street from our hotel to a pastry shop. We bought a really great cake like thing that we ate when we got back to the hotel, but we also bought some pastries to eat tomorrow. That was not the cool part though. On the way back to the hotel we stopped at this small clothing store to look at the clothes displayed in the window. Then one of the ladies that worked there came out and ushered us inside. It was neat because as soon as we got inside they gave us a once-over then they were pointing out clothes they thought would be good for us. Kassy who is really tall, beautiful and skinny ended up buying one of the shirts they handed to her. While she was trying it on they were showing me different clothes. They did not speak any English, but I kind of felt like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman when those people in the stores were dressing her up. The women were so nice and when Kassy came out to show us the shirt they were “Oohing” and “Awing” right along with us. I did not buy anything. Kassy speaks Chinese because she was a translator of sorts in the army. She told us later that the women had been exclaiming to each other about how cute we were. I guess if you were to translate it literally they were saying “what little foreigners.” I had so much fun in there. It was an awesome experience. We might go back to that store once more before we leave.
Last night was a blast. It started out at dinner. We had a student from
When we got back to the hotel 4 of us went and got massages. It felt so good. It was very deep. Mom would have really like that pressure. Dad would not have been able to stand it. We paid 100 Yen for an hour full body message. That is just about $12. It was so good I might have liked it a little bit softer, but I didn’t ask and I felt so good when they were done. I did wake up with a bruise on my lower back though. The girls who did them actually came down to our rooms and did it on our beds. That was kind of nice but very unexpected. The girls were so tiny though, I had no idea their small hands could produce that much pressure. They were really sweet too. They talked just about the whole time. I guess that is what is done here. It is ok to talk. Kassy speaks Chinese so she had a full hour conversation with them. She let me know what they were all talking about and so I could keep up. The lady messaging me spoke a little English so she did her best to speak in English and include me. I had complemented her on her English and later Kassy told me she was really pleased that I had because it made her feel good that she was able to use her English on me and I could understand her since it was the only way we could communicate. Then that made me feel good.
After they left the room I called mom and we talked for a few minutes. Then I did some packing and went to bed and fell instantly asleep. Now I am on the bus on the way to the airport. Our group has split up so there are very few of us. We are only business students now. We are going to