Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Blue Skies over Shanghai

It's still hot, but the skies have cleared up, and it was blue skies all day! It's not just the architecture, but also the weather that is putting Beijing to shame. Shanghai also manages the traffic better by having double decker freeways! The freeway overpasses gave us some opportunities to take some pictures of the city.
Many of the skyscrapers are new, but whether they house apartments or businesses, they go out of their way to look interesting with different shapes, and building tops.
We started our day at the Jade Buddha Temple. It was similar to the Lama Temple in Beijing, but with less people! We enjoyed the relaxing atmosphere.
Our guide, Jane, is our first female tour guide, which made me happy, because I had a few questions I wanted to ask about the Chinese toilets and arthritic knees. She explained it all nicely, and said the old people (like me, perhaps?) prefer Western toilets. We also enjoyed her commentary as we visited the inside of the temple.
They allow you to take pictures of the reclining Buddha, but not the older Jade Buddha, which was made out of white Jade in Burma and sent to China in the mid-1800s.
We enjoyed tasting some herbal tea at the temple. They have a tea to remedy anything that is wrong with you. Ed and I opted for arthritis and back pain, while the 'kids' opted for immunity and energy.  They had the cutest little tiny tea cups to taste it in! The girl who poured for us even had an American accent, which is surprising, as she learned all her English in the tea shop!
We had lunch at the Bund, and enjoyed walking along the river and enjoying the Shanghai skyline, with the Oriental Pearl Tower, as well as the tallest building in Asia (now under construction on the right).
On the right side of the river bank is the Bund, a series of old colonial buildings built during the time when the British controlled Shanghai.
After lunch we stopped at the Yuyuan Gardens, where we enjoyed wandering through the beautiful trees, buildings, pathways, and ponds. It is a little oasis in the middle of the city.
The gardens were surrounded by great shopping which we also enjoyed. The merchants at the bazaar are accustomed to bargaining, so they start with outrageous prices, which almost make you not even want to dicker. They managed to talk us into a few trinkets, however. We were tempted to bring home a cricket in a cage, but didn't know if it would make it through customs.
In the evening we enjoyed the Acrobatic Show. In this picture, a boy is being flipped into a chair about 30 feet in the air. It was all very death-defying! In the grand finale the 7 motorcyclists in the giant sphere took our breath away! Crystal is anxious to get home and sign up for acrobatic classes. Brittany and John are going to try to get their Vespa up to speed so they can join the show!

1 comment:

  1. Those are the biggest cricket I have ever seen! While I disagree with some of the items customs will not let you bring back. I can see why crickets are not allowed. Loved how Shanghai uses its upward open space to create as sense of self expression.