19 October 2008

Shanghai 2

The good times keep rolling here in Shanghai.

Our hotel is near the complex of arts buildings that will be the epicenter of the Expo 2010 in Shanghai. The architechture throughout the city is incredible and this new complex of buildings is very groovy.

Everywhere we walk, we city older men and women sweeping the streets. I'm thinking that the government provides these maintenance positions to people who are past their prime in the workplace. The intersting thing is that they all use these homemade brooms; just dried branches and weeds bound together with string.

We shopped in a labyrinth underground marketplace near the metro station that services the Expo center. Cali wasn't much for the intense haggling, and the lack of air conditioning in that underground market didn't help any.

After shopping, we walked through the gardens outside the Science and Technology Museum, then took a taxi across town to the major downtown area of Shanghai. The views of the city from the bridge were spectacular.

Along the riverwalk in the Bund area, we observed several impressive statues. I enjoyed this one of the strong man battling what must have been a fierce wind as he tried to keep hold of his fabric...

and this one of a distinguished Chinese man who probably holds some significant place in local history.

Passing into the Nanjing shopping area, I chose not to donate to these statuesque ladies who were begging for money. They just seemed so stonefaced.

As this building-sized poster attests, the Chinese folks love the NBA. At least half a dozen times, friendly Chinese persons would stop us on the street to start conversations (seemingly to practice their English). Upon learning that we are from Utah, they invariably commented on the Utah Jazz. Of course I let them know that I am a Suns fan, not a Jazz fan, but this distinction may have been lost on them.

For those of you scoring at home, the correct answers below (from right to left in the style of the Chinese) are: Duncan, Arenas, McGrady, Howard, Garnett, Billups.

The Nanjing Road area is lovely. After walking for a while, we stopped for about a half hour to do some quality people-watching. If you look closely at the second picture below, you might just be able to make out the shape of a tree (despite its most excellent effort at camouflage).

Here's a photo of a shoe shop specializing in an American brand that seems vaguely familiar.

When we got off the beaten path, I stopped for a photo of this parking lot make excellent use of its limited space.

Then we stopped into a convenience store for locals. We were stocking up on Snickers, and despite being sorely tempted by the pot of boiled eggs soaking in some murky brown water next to the cash register...

we opted not to purchase a bag for ourselves.

Further along the way we passed a local eatery and noticed this table top covered with mushrooms. Not sure why the mushrooms were airing out on a table in front of the diner, along the walking path of the public, but who am I to question the time-tested methods of Chinese restauranteurs?

Everyone is feeling the pinch of high gas prices these days. Energy efficient vehicles are gaining popularity in America, but I've yet to find the motor scooter that gets "forever" miles per liter of gas. But that's what this scooter purports to do.

Finishing up our walk, we passed by this vendor selling delicious looking pigs feet stewing in some broth..

and then, across the street, I noticed this bin of live catfish splashing around in front of a catfish restaurant. Makes sense.

We're having a great time. More to come tomorrow.


Supercords said...

Great pictures and descriptions. Keep em coming. I want to see a few shots of you and Cali in the act of sampling some crazy street food.

Allison said...

One of our favorite items of clothing from china is a set of pajamas for the boys with Spiderman on it. The cool looking print across the chest says "Spidler-M".

I really need to visit someday. Love your pictures and descriptions...keep it up.