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Published: August 10th 2008
Well, we are here! I have decided to try this blog malarkey as Facebook has let me down and I have been unable to add photos. It is our 4th day here already and we might just be starting to adjust. We arrived very early Thursday morning and we were just totally exhausted. Nothing can prepare you for that kind of exhaustion! Sophie just wouldn't sleep on the plane, until the last 2 hours of course! We were on the plane with the Swiss Olympic team, but no Roger Federer sadly! The airline were great, can def recommend them, brilliant for the children especially.
We were met by a girl from our school who was very kind and brought us to our hotel which is great, clean and comfortable but there is no English here. One or two of the staff speak a bit of English and then we met 'Jonny' who speaks great English, which helped when we tried to get some food in the hotel restaurant. Sadly, it is not wonderful English, which we found out when the fish we had ordered, arrived with heads and tails on and all! Needless to say hardly any was eaten. Hands
down to soph who had a few mouthfuls without knowing what it was!
We were going to try and stay up all day but gave in to sleep for the entire afternoon as we were all feeling it! We wandered out in the evening and found a great Korean restaurant (we think!) and William adored the sticky rice and both the kids ate well considering how tired they were. We had ice creams on the way home which perked them up.
As we have 2 rooms, William and I are sharing and Ian and Sophie are in next door. On Friday morning we slept in until 11am and then had to force ourselves out of bed to go and find a late lunch. We headed onto the Bund area of Shanghai, probably the best known area, on the river. It is very touristy but brilliant. It was really really hot and sunny and we took a river cruise after lunch which was a great way to see more of the city. We spied a few places we want to go and see. The kids loved the boat and spent the whole time running around, but subsequently became really hot and were tired when we got off....typical children!!
We had KFC for tea as it was nice and easy, but still very Chinese! By this time it was getting dark and I had read it was the best time to see the Bund, and it was correct. The neon lights started coming on and it was amazing! People kept staring at us and then the photos started!! We are somewhat of a tourist attraction ourselves it seems, or at least the children are. We had 3 sets of people having their photos with them and it continues........
It took ages to get a taxi home as Friday night is the most popular time to be there, but we all fell into bed after a shower!
Yesterday we went to a Coffee Morning at the Coffee Bean, a Starbucks type place, which we found out about on the invaluable website, Shanghaiexpat.com. We met a load of people, including a Nanny from Portsmouth, Ed and Enrique who run the website and our new friends, Mark and Suzanne from Chicago. They have 2 kids too, Emily is the same age as Sophie and Nathan is 9. They all hit it off and after a lunch together, we went to the ZhongShan Park for the afternoon which was great. The kids went on a load of rides which were so cheap and did some sand art pictures which kept mummy busy for ages!
The coffee morning was great as we learned so much about Shanghai and all the top tips we really needed. It felt really good to talk English too, as the area our hotel in is very Chinese and hardly any English signs or anyone speaking English!
Today we met Mark, Suzanne, Nathan and Emily at the Aquarium, which was great. We had planned to go to the Zoo but heavy showers were forecast and it came true! It was a bit expensive, but amazing and William got a watch which he is learning to tell the time with! We then went on to the Century Park, via a trip on the Metro which is fab! So cleanand efficient and really cheap. You buy a transport card here and add credit to it which you can use on any kind of public transport....saves carrying cash all the time. The Park was beautiful and we saw some Brides, as I had read about, having their photos taken. Sadly it started raining and then we had a bit of fun......dashed back to the Metro and have come home for a quiet evening....Ian has just gone out to try and find some food for us to have in tonight and then we hope to have an early night....surely the kids can's stay awake until 11pm again???!!!!!
Well, a few bits of interesting infor.....we are struggling to find Diet Coke, we are having full fat or Sprite....but mainly just drinking lots of water. It's not as hot as I had thought but still we love AirCon!!
We are off flat hunting tomorrow which we are looking forward to, we can't wait to stop living out of suitcases! The biggest problem is going to be deciding which area to live in.....the search begins!
Hope you have enjoyed our first entry, will try and keep it going, thought it would be good for you all to read and please comment on if you like!
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