Last Friday was the start of the National Holiday here where we have a week’s holiday and the whole of China and his wife go away somewhere.We actually have to “give back” two days by teaching next Saturday and Sunday,but never mind.
The students mostly go home except for the ones who live too far away. We decided to go shopping in Shanghai this weekend,mainly to get good winter coats ,as we have been told that it will be very cold here in the winter,and although we have heating in our apartment,there is none in the classrooms. So we went to buy bus tickets.There were no tickets left for the morning bus from Lin’an to Shanghai,so we got some for the 2pm bus.WE made sandwiches and at 2pm set off on our shopping adventure.WE arrived in Shanghai at around 5.30pm and found our way easily to our cheapo hotel by way of the Shanghai metro,which is spotlessly clean,well labelled in Chinese and English and which has a great automated ticket system.You just press on the station you wish to go to,on the machine,it tells you the fare,and then you pay with notes or coins and get the correct change.Easy peasy! Anyhow the cheapo hotel was not exactly luxurious,and was right next to the ferry over the Huangpu river,but no matter.WE walked up and down Nanjing Road that night and snapped a few photos.There were large groups of people singing patriotic songs in the street.
On Sunday morning we got up and made our way by subway to Nanjing Street again (boy does that place have magnetism!).Then we walked up to North Sichuan Road where there is the wonder known as Qipu Market.I don’t know how to describe this place-it is shopping heaven or hell.Street upon street of shopping malls where the bargainer is King.WE bought a winter coat for Danny,sheepskin UGG boots for me,a bag for school and various other assorted things.After a few hours we realized we were both exhausted and starving.We couldn’t find anywhere to eat,except for little booths with takeaway and our feet were killing us.Finally we found the ubiquitous Chinese KFC and had to fight for a place to sit down. While we were sitting eating a young girl came up and asked to sit next to us.She turned out to be a Finance Major at Ningbo University which is twinned with Nottingham University,so we had a great chat with her.
WE did another couple of rounds of the shops and then staggered home to the hotel,planning to dump our purchases and go out to eat.However,at the hotel Danny had some kind of stomach attack which he first thought was kidney stones.I quickly ascertained where the International Hospital was and spoke to the pretty useless Harel Insurance agent on the phone.However,I really was not keen to entrust Danny to the care of the Chinese health services,even for a large sum of money.Fortunately after 2 Nurofen he fell asleep and felt better later on that night. Next day we got up and walked past Century Park,a rather flashy area resembling Ramat Aviv Gimel,and made our way to another market called A and P mall,which resides under the Science and TEchnology Museum Metro.Here it was more glitzy and less crowded by far.I got my winter coat,and Danny got some sports shoes.We were happy to have got all the stuff we wanted,and then got the 3pm bus back to Lin’an.We now have 2 days to rest at home,fortunate as my throat is a bit scratchy.Then on Thursday we are going to visit Wuzhen Water Town with two of my Literature students.