上海-爱与不爱 (Hits and Misses of Shanghai)

I used to belong to the category of travelers who probably would not step foot into china. But this trip totally convert me, oh well, at least I know for Shanghai. Had planned for a series of blog entries on this particular first trip as a couple (no kids) since 2008 but I guess, summary is still the best way to go. Here goes…

I love Shanghai because

1. My bestie is there! We shamelessly had a great stay at her place FOC and also shamelessly been treated to great foods by her! Poor Alden, her golden retriever had to be locked up because of me – the dog lover who is afraid of dogs.

Bestie Stella and me!

2. The foods! My fb pictures say it all! Both hub and I couldn’t stop mulling over the fact that we miss Shanghai food. The 生煎包,麻辣火锅,小笼包,汤圆,炒饭,the beer, pizza hut etc etc.

Food in Shanghai

3. The sights. The bund is beautiful with the colonial buildings made of huge stones and pillar. The night view was lovely and it felt good standing in the cold cold wind marveling at how this Chinese city has evolved. The night sky line is certainly lovely enough to compare with that of Hong Kong. And the streets are clean! At least on those that we walked on. For a moment, I did think that I was in Tokyo.

4. The Chinese language. The trip made me want to speak good Chinese, not just grammatically but also for pronunciation. I love it that they call their waitresses ‘服务员‘ and not ’小姐‘ -which means a hostess. I love it that they don’t address the taxi drivers ‘uncle’ but ‘师傅’. I guess this adds pride to the jobs. I think it’s respect also. Was jokingly telling hub that I should try this in Singapore and see how many 服务员 and 师傅 would respond to me.

5. The experiences. We tried the bullet train (高铁)which was good. Taxi rides felt safer than those we took in Hong Kong. The drivers were quiet and not foul mouth unless they are peeved by some reckless drivers. Services wise, maybe it’s because of the places we visited, most are good and even better than in Singapore’s.

The Misses!

1. The traffic! It’s pretty easy to die on the roads of Shanghai. Never trust the red lights. Most cars would stop but not the scooters and the vespas. At cross junction, turning cars WILL NOT give way to pedestrians. Look left, right front and back before crossing.

2. The haggling and bargaining especially at hancity and those smaller shops. I would rather shop at malls, really. Spirit of 死缠烂打 is an inborn feature of them. And if you don’t buy from them after they lower the price, they can really nag and scold you from 3rd floor to ground floor. To be honest, first time I did not enjoy shopping while traveling at all.

3. The services. Yes, we encountered good ones but also bad ones. I so wanted to eat this 汤包 from this tai hang shop. Guessed what? We signaled at least a 5 times for them to take order and set stupidly for about 15 minutes, still, no one came. So, we left and had the best pizza hut meal ever in our lives. My yummy 生煎包 also came at a price. The counter lady literally throw your change and chopsticks at you! But for 6 yuan and good food, we closed 2 eyes. Apparently, many of the local shops are still having such service standard. Not poor service, it’s NO service.

Hahah….so you see? Good Vd Bad, 5 Vs 3. Shanghai ain’t that bad after all. Kinda of thinking of going back again soon, for the FOOD and of course, MY BESTIE!! Hahha….

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