Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Shanghai Sights

We haven’t been posting as much on what we’ve been doing here in Shanghai because our internet is so slow. And by slow, I mean painfully slow. It took us 24 hours to download a one hour show from iTunes the other day; even watching little video clips on the internet can take two to three times the length of the clip. As we get no English TV, this means we’re stuck watching whatever DVDs we can score on the street.

Slow internet also makes it difficult to upload pictures to the blog, which is the best part of blogging about our adventures. Because really – looking at what we’ve seen and done is far more interesting than reading about what we’ve seen and done. As a result, our blogging of late has tended to be prose heavy and focused on observations. Rest assured though, we have been exploring the city, albiet at a slower pace as the boys are in school during the week. Our first weekend was spent settling in and getting the lay of the land, although we did manage a jaunt down to the Bund, Shanghai’s most famous tourist attraction.

Given the school adjustment, we spent last weekend, our first real weekend here, doing things we thought the boys might enjoy. We visited Pudong (via the Bund Tourist Tunnel - as cheesy as it sounds), the new part of Shanghai; gleaming and modern, it’s all been built on land that just 20 or so years ago used to be farmland.

The main draw of the day was Shanghai aquarium; while we all liked it, I think I enjoyed it the most as Doug and the boys had visited an aquarium in Xiamen just a week or so ago.

Given that Pudong is so new (reader bigger and cleaner accommodations), it’s become a bit of an expat haven, so we also managed to score some pretty good Italian food for dinner and sourced some Morningstar veggie sausage links, much to the delight of the boys.  They also loved checking out the Pearl Orient Tower up close, although we're going to save ascending to the top for a day with clearer weather.

On Sunday, we hit the Yu gardens, a beautifully classic Chinese garden created in the 16th century; the boys got to run around a bit and then check out all the tchotchkes at the surrounding bazaar, which is filled with touristy junk targeted mostly at mainland tourists.

Dinner was at the Western-style Boxing Cat Brew pub, making it the second Sunday in a row that we’ve managed to a) eat at a brew pub and b) take our kids to a bar. Apparently, it’s the expat thing to do though; while we at Boxing Cat, our future selves also visited (i.e. another American couple, a few years older than us, with their two boys, a few years older than our boys, playing video games on their phones sat next to us).

Not sure what this weekend has in store – probably more exploring of the neighborhood and Doug’s birthday celebration! – but you’ll probably hear about it in a week or so – which is how long it may take to upload the pictures recounting our journeys!

1 comment:

  1. Ah, good to hear about some adventures less dangerous than crossing the street! Wonderful sights and can almost hear the sounds of the brew pub. Good to hear your voice tonight as well. sending you our love. Dad and Judy