I woke up a crabbyy apple. OL was all Mr. sunshine too. Chipper and happy because we slept in.
Every muscle in my body ached down to my toes. Only my hands felt normal. Ew. This did not improve my mood. We had a lighter day planned, but still had to go get breakfast.
We subwayed to the McDonalds near Saruman’s tower.
Arrived around noon to hectic place. Loud electronic music, barely any seats and a big line.
OL found us two seats and I ordered. We scarfed down our food and headed back onto the subway to Yu gardens.
The tour book warned about it being a tourist trap. It can be. Very pushy people approach you the second you step off the subway waving colored photos of watches and handbags. They don’t take no for an answer unless you yell or give a dirty look.
Everyone came at us like fresh meat as we stopped to orientate selves with map. We had to keep walking.
The entrance to the yu gardens is inside the yuyuan bazaar, forcing us to navigate the sellers to get to the peace of the park.
The buildings of the bazaar are a definite nod to the China of the past that westerners eagerly anticipate a glimpse of.
OL finds a name chop maker and bargains him down from several hundred to 65 for a name chop. The chop maker carves the chop by hand. Neat to watch.
We keep going and head to park for a break from the intense shopping extravaganza, where shop owners open with amounts 10 times higher than they want.
The Yu gardens are worth it. The peace of the Chinese garden was only interrupted by tour guides with megaphones inside.
Tons of lovely photo ops and the forgetting about yuyuan bazaar. Wandered for a hour or so.
My mood was still not so good, but we decided to brave the souvenirs. After I got a t shirt in the garden for yuan 50 instead of yuan 120.
We realize we have to decide what we want to pay and pay it. Refuse to go up.
I decided 5$ is all I want to pay for tshirts and we do that for a few. The most important thing is not falling in love with anything and looking indifferent. We walked away so many time to get called back and finally get the price we wanted. It’s a lot of work, but we felt like we really spent our money well.
I even found a guy selling Mao watches so there mean xiao jie who refused to sell me stuff at the CCP meeting house gift shop.
We also got silk wall scrolls. Each time we got something, we adjusted our pricing.
Got a couple scarves. It’s so important to feign disgust and indifference.
But that made it hard to know when I really liked something. We ended up with a cornucopia of souvenirs. Spent hours at the market. Both of us bargained and used to other.
As night crept toward us, flush with success, we decided to take advantage of the nice clear skies and hit the bund for evening photos.
This is another not to be missed thing. The bund transforms at night and the Shanghai skyline truly sparkles to life. We walked beside it for a while coming up from the southern end. There was a lovely breeze off the water and it was a cooler night for once.
Afterwards, we walked to Nanjing Dong Lu for night pictures of the garish store signs in the pedestrian walkway. Worth a peek. There is a shop with an auction-like owner whose microphone voice spills into the sidewalk and across the street.
We jumped on the Nanjing Dong Lu. Subwayed back to Dong An Lu. Took pics of all our souvenirs
and had dinner at our restaurant. I had the mushu pork and OL had his hot and sour pork. I had a Miranda orange soda and OL had a coke. No ice but cold.
We came home and interneted before bed. I got slap happy and realized migraine aura. Took a migraine pill and had another bad nights’ sleep.