The First Day

I was pleased that I was able to spend the day on my own, for the first whole day in China.  I slept quite well, though woke a few times during the night, and eventually got up, showered and dressed and went to breakfast around 8 am.  Breakfast and Wi-Fi were included in my tariff at the hotel, but my first visit to the breakfast room was enough.  Usual Chinese food – congee, boiled eggs, some buns.  Tea – usually only green tea is served.  I would have liked pepper with my egg, but managed to eat it without.  I only went the once.

I found out that Carrefour Supermarket was not far away, so walked slowly in the direction I was told, exploring from the outside the many shops along the way. Awesome fashion (for small people!), floral art, food shops, a massage place, nail place (I might get my nails done!) and on. Then I saw the familiar sign of Carrefour on the corner of a busy intersection.  

Inside, it was just as I remember the Carrefour at Shaoxing.  It felt like returning to familiar territory though I had never been to this one.  I found a trolley and slowly wandered through the store, seeking familiar products and just enjoying reminiscing.  I did buy some food items – nuts, raisins, biscuits, coffee (though the coffee and milk mix) for my hotel room does not have a fridge.

I returned to the hotel with my purchases  – feeling very clever that I recognised the corner near the hotel.  It is always a challenge initially to remember the directions to and from one’s hotel.  Now I am very familiar with it but day one, I was not.

I did return to Carrefour later in the day to buy a teaspoon.  There was none in my room!  I found a little supermarket opposite the hotel, where I buy my water and iced tea, so that I do not have to carry heavy stuff all the way from Carrefour.

The television in my room is a mystery.  I could turn it on, but not find a channel with English.  I asked at the front desk, but no one spoke English and I didn’t get far.  I tried to find out on the Internet, but could not find any site with info on CNN.  I remember watching CNN on previous visits to China, though I do recall there was some issue with CNN some time ago.  So no TV.

Still, it was a day of rest for me to recover from the long journey to China.  I slept for a while, read my book, and went for occasional walks around the hotel  - as much as I could to get my bearings. It was a busy street.

View from my hotel window.
I neglected to report that I was presented with a lovely bunch of flowers at the airport.  

The flowers were wonderful.  I loved the blue thick paper wrapped around them.  There were carnations and liliums, and each night the fragrance from the liliums filled the room.  So beautiful to look and wonderful smell.

Along the road 

Pedestrian Walk

 It was a pleasant walk from the hotel to Carrefour, which I did on several occasions during my visit, enjoying the window shopping along the way.

The roads and footpath were covered in leaves, and workers were busy with their brooms sweeping up the leaves.  As I walked along the road I heard music coming from a vehicle and looked up in time to see the water truck spraying water on the road, which pushed the leaves into the gutter.  Unfortunately the water went beyond the road and pedestrians were sprayed as well.  I saw it coming and took evasive action, but noted that several other pedestrians were not so lucky and were left quite wet.

Ah, the water truck!
I remembered the sound of the music - and whenever I heard it coming made sure I was not within its water spray!

The leaves were  packed into large bags, which were later collected by a council vehicle.


peter petterson said…
Did you find much difference in attitudes from the time you were teaching in China? Hope you had a great visit.