Shanghai... The city of Excitement

Written by Nov 19, 2005 05:11
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Shanghai..the Modern City

Shanghai was a fantastic adventure. I was driven to the airport in a car, and after wandering the shops at the airport, looking at delicacies such as plastic packaged whole fish and 3 roots of fresh ginseng for 50 yuan, I got to Shanghai with Air China who only gave me a thin packet of biscuits with my orange drink.

It was a pleasant trip and the views below were of green rice fields and a very beautiful Wuhan.

Shanghai was highrise buildings with adjacent plots of market gardens. There are many market gardens, some under plastic covers, near the airport. I was met at the airport, queued up in a long winding queue for a taxi, and then taken to my hotel, which had 2 rooms with a suite and two bathrooms. Two young ladies took me
shopping to the Shanghai Market. This was a huge assortment of stalls of every description..scarves, hair accessories, spectacles, clothes, belts, fans, shoes, etc.

The weather was sweltering and the stalls were closely crammed together and very hot and humid. Sweat poured down my face in rivulets, and fanning myself furiously with little effect, we made our way through the stalls bargaining for items that we had no intention of buying. I thought many of the prices were quite dear compared with Wuhan, and did not buy much at all as felt disconcerted by the amount initially asked for, which seemed too much to lower, like 80 yuan for folding reading glasses. The seller conned me into paying 25 yuan. Every stall after this had glasses and I perversely
insisted on asking the price which was always wel below 25 yuan. I felt annoyed for I had bargained down to what was actually a starting price. Sigh!!!

Same with 'silk' scarves. I bought two which I cleverly bargained down from 160 to 25. Then in a huge department Store later, there were my scarves at 20 yuan. Sigh!! No wonder I hate bargaining...I always did, even in my florist shops.

The market was hot, crowded, colorful and very, very much alive. People swarmed in throngs of mankind..many westerners amongst the crowds. I started smiling at them initially, as they looked a novelty item after so long here in China, but I saw so many I gave up being friendly and concentrated on fanning furiously.

The buildings of Shanghai are amazingly beautiful. There are many ultra modern structures which the chinese are very proud of...and many more under construction. Glass, circular features, sweeping architraves, turrets and towers all interspersed with an another world unreality and beautiful with an ethereal dignity. I stood, in the pouring rain without an umbrella, and admired the huge tower across the Huang Pu River..a stately monument to the modern times.

Behind, the ancient buildings were floodlit in pastel colors, with highrise gardens and balconies and little pagodas.The Lujiazui Financial and Trade Center with the Oriental pearl TV tower is ranked as the highest construction in China.

The People's Square was magnificent with 80,000 sq metres of gardens and waterfalls with colored lights. The entire place at night is a myriad of lights ..a mixture of Vegas and Sydney..a kalaidescope of color. Below the pedestrians amble amidst peddlers hawking flashing lights, single roses, and the odd food wagon cooking moving squid tails and kebabs on skewers.

The Shanghai Museum is a fabulous building, as is the Sciland..

The Shanghai Stadium looked like a huge amoeba with a capacity of 80,000 seats and takes 150,00 sq meters with flashing lights and an out-world impression which leaves one totally awed and breathless like all the things I saw there.

The Pudong Airport is another miracle...32 sq kilometers and 32 kms out of town (50 yuan by taxi) and the Nampo cable bridge is a suspension bridge across the Huang Pu River with a length of 8,346 meters.

I was overawed, fascinated, enthralled and amazed at what I saw in the short journey there and back. Yesterday it was hot, sunny and ultra humid, and today pouring rain and still humid. Shanghai is a place not to be missed...truly amazing and breathtaking. It is also very cosmopolitan and much labelling is in English.

Stunning and supendous... I would like to have more time there

Maggi Carstairs 2005

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