Day 155: Shanghai, China.

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May 1st 2010
Published: June 27th 2010
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Day 155: Saturday, May 1st, 2010.
Shanghai, China.

Remember 50 years ago when I went to China? Then I stopped writing once I was in Shanghai and you all assumed I had met my demise there? Nope, still kickin'. I've been back in the States for a month and a half now, don't know how much I'll remember from looking at pictures but let's find out. And now you (will) know... the rest of the story.

So, that morning Jerry took us on a very quick walking tour. Most of the others wanted to go to the Shanghai Museum but since museum's tend to bore me, I opted to head over to the Yuyuan Garden and agreed to meet up with them at a specific time later. It was a bit of a walk, more than I had planned on, and took me about 30 minutes to walk to.

The gardens were nice- but all the little buildings (pagodas I guess?) were the main thing there- in my opinion at least. There was a back little corner where you could climb up some stone little stairs and look over the wall to the present day world. Kind of surreal to then glance behind you and see the time of days gone by.

After the garden, I wandered around Yuyuan Classical Street. Talk about crowded. It's busy anytime, but the World Fair opened today so everyone is in "town" for that. I grabbed a taxi and it only took about 5 minutes to drive back to the museum to meet up with the others.

I had about an hour before I had to meet them so I walked around the area and saw that a lot of people kept disappearing into this entryway that led into the ground. I decided to follow and found myself falling thru the rabbit hole (or so it felt). Below the museum is the Hong Kong Mall. It was very odd to walk down a large spiral staircase and suddenly be in a mall. The ceilings were quite low, and one section was set up to look like Shanghai back in blah blah blah (don't remember what year). Very interesting. I decided to head up above ground and sat under a tree to read my book- I'm a geek and always carry one with me. I checked the clock on my iPhone instead of my wristwatch and guess what, the wristwatch was 20 minutes off- I was supposed to meet up with the others 40 minutes ago. So, while I was wandering below ground, they were above ground looking for me. How "True Blood" sounding is that? Oh well, I just headed back to the hotel, I was ready for a nap anyway.

That night, we went and saw the Shanghai Acrobats. They were amazing!! Saw the sign later that we weren't supposed to take pictures or video. Oops! Damon, Steve and myself all sat there filming and taking pictures like crazy- you would have thought our kid was up on stage or something. Truly remarkable.

After that, we headed back to the hotel (taxi's to and fro) and after some confusion and debate as to what we wanted to do for dinner, we settled on a restaurant right around the corner from our hotel. The food was fantastic, but the menu was the best part. This had the worse (therefore "the best") "Engrish" I saw in all my travels. I was laughing out loud at this menu and I'm sure I was insulting the restaurant- sorry! I loved the menu so much that I tried to buy it from our waiter. He said it wasn't for sale so I asked for the manager. The manager came over, I made my plea and he said he'd see what he could do. I was so excited- I wanted that menu! Talk about an awesome coffee table book! We got our food, and afterwards I flagged down the waiter and asked him the manager had decided. He went away, came back, and said the manager said "no." I then offered him 100 Yuan to sneak one to me, and he said no as well- that definitely did insult him. Oops- bad American. I took a few pictures so that will have to suffice.

This was our last official night with this tour group and Jerry. Sorry, can't say I'll miss Jerry. But I'll very much miss the group- great group. I've been very fortunate with all the friends I've made these past 6 months (awwww). Everyone in the group is staying in Shanghai for another day or two so we'll still see each other but tomorrow, myself, Steve and Damon will meet up with our new group and we'll be joining them as we head to Xi'an and then Beijing.

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