So we have finished yet another day in Shanghai! Today's weather was beautiful, though decidedly abnormal for this area. It was warm, about 83 degrees, and pretty overcast- though we did see the sun at least twice. The best part was that there was no threat of rain!!
We began breakfast in the hotel restaurant again and went for a stroll outside and tried to find a phone booth that would accept my phone card. (We never did!) Alli began to glare at me after 15 minutes, so we came back to our room. As soon as we got onto the elevator, I swear I heard her stomach scream! We ran back to the room and dashed inside just in time...yup, travelers tummy. She was extremely upset and could not understand why her tummy was hurting so badly. Luckily, I brought Pepto, so after a dose and some quiet time, she was as good as new.
I was able to contact my former teacher, Weimin, today and she met us at the hotel around 11am to take us to lunch. She drives (not most Shanghai residents do) and the best part was that her car has a Chinese GPS. Amazing!
We had planned to go to the Shanghai Museum, but it was impossibly crowded, so we just went to lunch instead. We had a great time- Allison and Weimin really took to one another, it was sweet!
After Weimin went home, Allison and I decided to walk down Nanjing Road again and met two new friends, Daisy and Chao. Its amazing how people in China just befriend you at once (kind of like adoption for the day). They were very nice students from Qingdao University (amazingly, very close to Jinan city- where I will soon live) and invited us to accompany them to an authentic Chinese tea ceremony. Apparently the tea is approved by the Chinese government and is only available once every three years, so it was a not to be missed experience.
Allison and I went with Daisy and Chao (with Allison holding Daisy's hand, no less) and went to tea! It was amazing! And very expensive!! We tasted 8 different teas, along with several tea snacks. We learned which teas were good for which parts of the body, and best- I could understand most of it! The worst part was when the bill came- $752 yuan (convert that yourself- I'm still in denial) but we did get several boxes of tea...yes Claude, one is for you!
After all this, we went back to the hotel for a much earned rest and slept the rest of the afternoon away! When we next awoke, it was 10:30pm, and Alli and I were hungry. Contrary to her repeated requests, we could not just "order something and have it delivered" so I decided that we would try to find a night market. I consulted the internet and the map, and finally located one nearby, so we decided to walk. Yes, I took my 6 year old out walking at 12am in a search for street food. Mother of the Year, here I come!
Unfortunately, the market was closed by the time we got there, bu happily, we made another friend, Liu FuChao a 25 year old Chinese guy from Beijing on vacation in Shanghai. He spoke a little English (he proudly told me that he is self taught)and he was great company. For late dinner, we ate spring rolls, fried noodles and steamed dumplings (饺子jiao zi,say jaowe tzi). It was nearly 1:30, so we said goodbye and promised Fuchao that we would call him when we go to Beijing.
So, here we are again, at the ungodly hour of 2am, trying to go back to sleep...