Sunday, January 31, 2010

One Night in Shanghai

My experience of Shanghai, China is limited to Nanjing Road at night ( a shopping and entertainment area ) up to countless images of sky rise buildings _ period. Anyway, it was a one night visit only and the next evening I was on my flight back to Hongkong.

HK airport, to China

Chinese neon signs

It was a lil' glimpse of Shanghai but just enough to take an impression of the city known for _ one of the largest metropolitan areas in the world.

I stayed in a hotel nestled within the vicinity of Nanjing road which is a 24/7 district fitted to a one nighter tourist like me.

Flashed by strings of neon lights shops and restaurant, the night district was crawled by locals and tourists pedestrians. It was really like being in a bigger version of Hongkong.

I refused to be limited by time thu'. With only 3 hours sleep, I woke up earliest the following morning and took a cab around. That was so brave!! hehe, I forgot to mention I was with a friend who frequented the city and spoke Mandarin and other Chinese languages. I felt safe then.. hahaha!!

It would be real pain to travel alone in this 99.9% no-speaking-English big city. For one, most of the logos and street signs were in Chinese characters. Second of all, without the presence of my Chinese speaking friend, I didn't have a single idea how on earth to talk with this cab driver.

Neither, I had the opportunity to ask him why was he encased in a plexiglass shield like that? What was the protection for? On my next visit, I'll make sure to find out why. The taxi driver photo also reminded me of the strong herbal minty odour inside the cab, which I used to smell everyday,( courtesy of the bank officers whose daily stress-related headaches were eased by wiping such Chinese oil in their foreheads ), in a bank located inside China Town here in our country, where I had experienced to work. I was tempted to ask him if he was suffering from headache too or was the smell came from his car air freshener. Well, I chose to keep silent then. Translations would be very tedious in that scenario.

xiao long bao

The highlight of my day was to taste authentic Shanghai dishes, dumplings such as the intriguing " xiao long bao" . I had it in our local China town Ongpin, but I felt I should have it where it was created. It looked like a bigger siomai but you would be surprised by the tasty broth inside. My friend taught me how to manage ( a huge one slurp was a must!) the broth before the liquid dropped found its way down to my dress. More of this in my food blog click here.

Anyway, going back to Shanghai, after getting dizzy by sky high rising buildings, old and new, many were still under constructions, as breezy as I arrived in Shanghai, I found myself back to the airport for my return to Hongkong.

Shanghai airport

Kung Hei Fat Choi to all my Chinese friends !!!_ in two weeks.

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