Tuesday, May 3, 2011

It finally feels like China to me, whew!

This morning’s first challenge was to find the train station, then the platform and my seat. Luckily the characters on my ticket included English numbers. What a difference from 19 years ago when nothing was in English. I sat in the 2nd class and the train was clean, comfortable and fast. The 45-minute ride went quickly.

Arriving at the train station in Hangzhou, I now needed to find bus Y17. Thank goodness there was a sign pointing to where the buses were in English, but after I followed it upstairs, I still wandered around for a half hour to find the right bus, as there was no order to where which bus was located.

I almost gave up, but perseverance paid off and I found it. The hostel had sent me directions, which is how I knew to take Y17, but only sent me the stop name in English. Luckily someone understood what I was saying and I found out it was four stops away. I got off the bus, a bit hesitant that I was in the correct place and reread the directions. They said the hostel was down an alley way across from a hotel. I looked up and down the street and it was lined with trees. Not a building in sight. So I started walking in a direction, apparently the correct direction, because I saw the sign for the hotel, looked across the street and saw the alley. The second success of the day!

I dropped off my luggage and proceeded to explore the lake. Despite a light drizzle, the scenery was just as promised, it looked like a Chinese painting. I got a chance to climb the Leifeng Pagoda next to the lake and learned about the legend of the White Snake. I also finally made it my first monastery this trip, saw some interesting Buddhas and

was lucky enough to be there in the afternoon when the monks were chanting.

Things I am learning about China:

  • Traveling is going to be easier then it was, but still challenging.
  • My Chinese roommates always want to share some food with me, usually sweets. I need to start carrying some sweets with me.
  • Men in Shanghai and adjoining areas carry their girlfriend's or wife's purses.

  • Toilet training is very different here, once babies start walking, they wear split pants, that is there is an opening in their pants, so they can squat and toilet when needed.
  • Chinese people have dogs as pets, they are no longer just for eating.
  • As China makes their national attractions more tourist friendly they are doing it right, the pagoda I visited, had elevators and escalators, as well as music piped in discreetly on the grounds.


Anonymous said...

I would like to send you an email invitation to a media event when the new Murray’s Cheese Shops open in November in more Houston area Kroger stores.
My email is marcella.bielskiwright@fredmeyer.com
My blog is cheesemonger.wordpress.com
Marcella Wright
Murray’s Cheese Specialist for Kroger and Fred Meyer

Social Culture said...

Hi Food Princess! Can you email me an email address I could send a press release to for your review? Thanks! My email is socialcult@gmail.com.

mrk3nx said...

i love your blog, see ya

Admin said...

nice blog