Day 4 – planning museum, temple, more trains and more shopping

Jun - 01 2015 | By

Another busy day! It’s hard to comprehend it’s Sunday.
We woke early to walk to people square where we found so many activities.. The Chinese love their fitness. We first came across dancing. A person simply takes music and random people arrive at 7 to dance. It was amazing. We all got involved at first with silly freestyle dancing, until Mrs Saddlier organised two lines for the heel and toe polka. Weren’t we glad Mr J did bush dancing last week.
Many Chinese got involved. Even an 80 year old lady, that we found out goes every morning and has done so for years.
The further we walked the more amazing sights we saw. First up was Tai Chi. They were all in their silks and soo in rhythm with each other. Next we came across sword fighting/dancing (they were only plastic swords luckily) and people dancing with fans. There were even people off to the side playing badminton. Picture all of this in a heaps bigger Hargreaves Mall and that’s what it was like.
Next on our daily agenda was the planning museum. This was really cool. They have a full scale model of Shanghai that you can walk around.
Some facts for those that care;
* Shanghai has a population of approx 24 million people on land that is 6340 squared kilometres.
* in 1949 the population was 4.14 million with residents having 3.9 squared metres living space. But in2010 with the population over 20 million, the living space grew to 16.7 square metres. So heaps more people, same amount of land, yet quadruple the living space. The Chinese are well planned!
After expanding our knowledge of Shanghai it was time for lunch. We snuck off from our home group as Miss Gallagher wouldn’t let us have ‘any American take away’ again. We found a place where no staff spoke English, but somehow we managed to order pork dumplings and a noodle dish with Shrimps, chives, soya bean paste and some broth. Traditional Chinese and it was delicious. We even nailed the chopsticks. After full bellies we went to see another one at the temple.
It was absolutely breathtaking.
We visited the sights and took heaps of photos and even tested our good luck by throwing coins into a big temple. It took quite a few turns for us to be ‘lucky’.
After the temple we had an hour spare and after an unanimous vote we revisited the markets. More presents were purchased with Fras very happy with beats for 25 yuan and Miss G extremely happy with her tea set.
The night activity involved a river cruise on the Bund. As it was dark the lights of the buildings were amazing. The cruise took 45 minutes and we were in awe of the breathtaking views.
We also had our paparazzi again. All the Chinese love us ‘aussies’!!

We are off to bed as its late and we have to be up early to Skype the school. We can’t wait to talk to you all.
Tomorrow we leave for Suzhou.

On a lasting comment we thought we would share our biggest highlight so far.
Kurt – the metro system. I love getting on the trains, they go really fast and it’s cool to train surf
Fras – pearl tower. The views were awesome and I loved laying face first on the glass looking nearly 300 metres down at the ground.
James- Pearl tower and the circus. Actually I wish the Circus was in the Pearl tower. The fact that the Pearltower was 273 metres tall and Layed on the glass. I loved everything about the circus!!!

Talk to you all tomorrow

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2 Comments

  1. Russell Jeffrey says:

    You seem to be having a fabulous time , wish I was there especially for the bush dancing, Mr J

  2. Russell Jeffrey says:

    A post on behalf Brdiget Gallagher and the intrepid travellers,

    Well we are now in Suzhou. Today we are under the guidance of a tour guide that will be with us for the duration of our time in Suzhou. Hey were very informative on the trip.. We all learnt something new..
    Did you know that not all people in China eat an abundance of rice on a daily basis??
    The residents in the south of China eat rice frequently, as it is the perfect climate to grow the grain. The climate is hot and humid, with a lot of rainfall.
    In the north of China it is too dry to grow rice. They grow wheat instead. The wheat is then used for noodles (similar to ourl spaghetti pasta and hokkien noodles) and steamed bread (most of their bread is quite sweet, unlike our savoury bread).
    Rice is very expensive to purchase in northern China.
    The population of Suzhou is 12 million, but land is much bigger than Shanghai, with it being over 8000 square kilometres
    Shanghai is one of the oldest cities in China being built in 514bc. It is the only city not to change its original site.

    After a 1.5 hour bus trip we arrived at our motel. We had one hour to rest before we had Burger King for lunch..
    After indulging in burgers and fries we a boarded a bus to the sacred sight of ‘Tiger Hill’. It was absolutely amazing.
    We spent time walking with our tour guide who was able to stop and tell us interesting information along the way. The tiger hill got its name as there is a tomb that buried the king 2500 years ago. To ensure no one went to find this grave site, his son, who was the king at the time, would tell everyone there was a tiger at the top of the hill and that if you went there, he would kill you. The tomb was found just over 30 years ago and under the direction of the government, it has still never been opened as they are worried it will ruin the foundations.
    Very informative afternoon.

    The humidity was stifling today.. We were all hot and sweaty by the end.

    Well dinner tonight was definitely traditional Chinese cuisine. We were all out on tables with a lazy Susan in the middle and they brought the food out to us. We didn’t even have to order. It started very well with steamed rice, a couple of vegetables dishes androgen there were all the meat dishes. There was beef and vegetables, sweet and sour pork, a really yummy prawn dish and then there was a chicken soup type dish. It looked really nice, until we spotted the portions of chicken that were included. There were chicken feel and a whole chicken head. Yuk!! There was one adventurous sole amongst our group and that was the one and only James ‘iron gut’ Toomey.. See photo on blog.
    Overall it was a delicious meal and we were all full at the end.

    Our first early night tonight as we are getting picked up at 8 to attend our sister school tomorrow.



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