After spending 15+ hours on a plane I desperately wanted a shower & a good night’s sleep. What day is it anyway? The limo driver that picked us up at the airport had a death wish. No really, I’m certain of it. He was weaving in & out of other cars, accelerating with petal to the metal mentality, slamming on brakes, honking & gesturing…and that was BEFORE we even left the airport parking garage!! I immediately came to the conclusion that barf bags are wasted on airlines; they belong in the back seat of cars here. The drive to our hotel in the Bund held me spellbound, half trying not to throw up, half attempting to take in all the sites. The apartment high rises were skyscrapers & numerous, more than hinting at millions of residents in this city. The pollution was unmistakable…thick, gray sky permeated the entire city.
Ultimately, we survived the ride to the hotel…don’t ask me how; I have never in my life seen cars change lanes in such proximity of one another w/o scraping the paint job. I was almost impressed.
Telling ourselves it was too early for bed, Zech and I took a walk along the riverfront across from Pearl Tower and into the Bund–a magnificent architectural area displaying buildings of Greek revival, art deco, and several other styles unfamiliar to my bloodshot eyes. We were both aghast at the peskiness of the merchants who followed us with no comprehension of the term “personal space”, grabbing at our clothes and shouting at us to come & buy…everything from trinkets to toys to rice jewelry to fried octopus. One very resourceful man who knew English was following Zech shouting “EDDIE, EDDIE come lookie”. Zech figured out that the man was reading the logo on his Eddie Bauer backpack and we had a good laugh. And every other person wanted their photo taken with Zech. It frightened him at first…there’s just something about having people paw at you that sets you on edge. But as Zech began to understand that people were excited to see someone so different looking from themselves, he eventually got comfortable with the attention.
Shanghai has been beautiful. I’m sharing photos of some of the sites we took in at Jade Buddha Temple, Shanghai Theatre, Shanghai Museum, People’s Square, & Yu Garden. And the views from our hotel were stunning of the Shanghai skyline and riverfront.