Walk it out.
Trip Start May 17, 2013
15Trip End May 30, 2013
Walking is what we did. We left the hotel after the wings played and headed to the Peoples Square. This is right outside our hotel and has a pretty lush park that has an amusement park and some government buildings. We met Pete and Nicole at the Starbucks in the park. Cold coffee was needed and we strolled around this ginormous block. We saw the remains of a scooter accident where it plowed into the side of a government official's car and there were tons of Chinese police. Everything has an admission here and we forwent the Urban planning museum. We made our way back to Starbucks and met up with Paul and Janet. Janet had a meeting with some execs at GM this morning
We all headed to the subway to take our first ride. You have to get a card just like in Chicago except it is only 3 RNB for a ride ($.50). Not too shabby. It was clean and air conditioned. We found the line we needed and got on. Well..I thought it was clean. Someone had peed on this one and thanks to the law of physics it was not staying in one place. We made our way down the car and all asked who had hand sanitizer. We took this train about 2 miles and went to the Yu Yuan gardens. This is in old town and actually not too far from where we were on last sunday ordering suits. We entered and the first part had all these little shops that you could buy incense and prayers cards. They had big fire pits and people were throwing in cards by the dozen. There were lots of people kneeling and praying and as we walked into the temple area there was a table of monks chanting and with tweezers they were pulling apart the flame. It was bizarre. People were placing offerings at the feet of the gods and money as well. They had places in front of all the figures of the god where people kneeled and rocked back and forth chanting. After exiting the temple we were in the gardens. I will say from the street you would never imagine how big this area really was. There were beautiful buildings and glistening rooftops. The coy ponds were full of sherbet and red fish and the smell of the area was coming from all the tiny dumpling shops around the perimeter
I have never seen anything like this before. We took the subway and before you go to exit to street level, there is an entire shopping mall underground. We walked in to the area and immediately went to Lucy's. Nope, not the massage girl, thank GOD! This was an electronic shop that Marlin bought an iPhone backup battery from. It stopped working the first day. She took it back and he got a new one. We looked around and they all try really hard to get you in their stores. We headed to the leather store that Marlin gets me purses from and had no success. She brought some new ones out from "the back" but nothing that jumped out at me. I did however head to the silk store across the street and we got the gal selling scarves down from 85 rnb to 25 rnb..Not too bad! We at this point were all feeling tired and decided that we would go back to the fake market later in the week