Friday, May 2, 2008

Bunds and Rats and Bear--Oh MY!

When Kara was here in February I knew that I wanted to blog--or at least make the attempt. Kara convinced me to do it and then helped me set up the blog before she left for London. I have been waiting for Kara to post about the rest of her China trip, but with all of her Internet challenges, I don't think she will be revisiting the rest of her time here with you. So I have decided to share a little more of what we did together. Side note: It was wonderful to be mothering again and it sure didn't take Kara long to adjust being mothered!

We decided that we would take a trip to Shanghai and Beijing. Kara had not been to Shanghai before, and it had been 25 years since I had been, so we were excited to go. This is a picture of me in a newly renovated upscale shopping district. It used to be an old housing neighborhood. However, the upper stories are still tenant occupied...check out what Kara is pointing to....thankfully NOT for sale! Pretty Funny!

Now what are the odds of Kara, Shaka and Maui (I am ignorning the second half of the name)coming together in Shanghai?

We went into one store and encountered this very large and contented cat. Couldn't resist the photo...the eyes were mesmerizing!
In this newer shopping district, we were bombarded with festive Chinese New Year decorations. They were plentiful and colorful...making "The Year of the Rat" most appealing!

Later that night, we were dropped off across the Huangpu River to view "The Bund" in all its night time glory. This is supposed to be one of the most spectacular waterfronts in the world. We were told by our driver that he would pick us up in one hour. Kara and I wandered down to the waterfront and looked in vain for 'The Bund'--as we were not 100 percent sure what we were supposed to see. Unbeknown to us, Shanghai over used their electricity quota and had begun to economize by NOT lighting up The Bund--or at least on the night we were there. Just our luck! This is what we were supposed to see.

Instead, this is what we saw! Sad...

To keep from freezing to death (since our driver was not coming back for at least 50 minutes), we entertained ourselves by taking pictures. Meet the frozen banditos! We were so cold and had nowhere to keep warm!

The next day we went to the countryside. We visited an old Chinese water village. It was a quiet and peaceful glimpse into what life must have been like hundreds of years ago. Thankfully the sun came out, making it a beautiful day to browse!

We took a water tour of the village and our oars person happened to be a lady! About 5 minutes into the ride, she asked if she could serenade us--to which we enthusiastically said "YES"! People were stopping on the bridges and sidewalks to watch her row and sing! Simply delightful!

We had a wonderful time in Shanghai. I would go back again if given the opportunity. When we went there 25 years ago, we were told that we would never see that China again. It was true...the China I saw those many years ago has been absorbed into a new China...different, but still fascinating. Now we're off to Beijing! Who wants to come?

PS: The Bear in the title needs no explanation to those in the know!


  1. how about i come along next time. think about all the dress-ups we could find! :)

  2. Diane,
    I love this! Thank you for sharing this with me. I feel like I am right there with you. Wonderful pictures!


  3. Um, are you accepting adoption requests? Very cool. I feel so cultured and well traveled now!

  4. I want to come. Please, Please, I'll never take no for an answer

  5. I am SO jealous. This is killing me. I guess the fact that it is already over and done is somewhat comforting--but only somewhat. Glad you had a great time, I love when you share your travels.

  6. I'm jealous, too!! So much that it hurts my heart! But we just have seven short months until it's Hong Kong or bust!

    Oh, and the banditos picture? Love it.

  7. Ah, my partner in crime. It was fun to relive all those (freezing) moments.

    BTW, I am officially typing this from my new place. I am so online again, baby!