China Pictures (Hangzhou- 杭州) (Monday 2005-04-18/19/20)
We got to Hangzhou in the end of the afternoon, and the bus unloaded us in front of West Lake, on the city side. I remember that last time they were just starting to pretty up the lakefront.
A convenience store. I must've missed those Western-style convenience stores last time around. I'm not sure. Seems like I missed a lot of things. But knowing bits of Putonghua makes me braver. In each city, I went into those stores. They prove to be the best, most reliable buying places for food/drinks.
There was beer served at every meal... Very popular, and cheap in Asia. They serve it to you as if it were water (not yet as cheap as water, but still pretty close). Not particularly good too, the traditional "Chinese" beer is bland, but you start seeing beverages brewed by foreign companies (Interbrew, Budweiser, Suntory) which have a little bit more taste...

Another first time in China was to take the bus. It's almost becoming routine. While taxi is not expensive (about 20RMB, or 4CAD) to take you from our hotel to West Lake, it's only a yuan in bus (15 cents).

Streets of Hangzhou, capital of the Zhejiang province. Taken from the second floor of the bus I took from the suburb in the northeast of the city to downtown.

I couldn't resist, and had a McChicken, which I barely knew how to order (of course, every possible sandwich name is translated into hanzi). The chicken patty was kinda drier than its American counterpart. Have yet to eat in a McDonald's in HK, and so far that means I've been successful in trying new things.
To my surprise, there was an exhibit on calcography, in collaboration with Le Louvre museum in Paris, in a small new city museum on the side of West Lake, near the Hostelling International Youth Hostel (which I "bumped into" by chance - and happened to me again in Nanjing). The funny thing about that museum was that about everyone at the museum was taking pictures, with the flash even. o_O

It was a rainy day in Hangzhou, and I left the hotel without my umbrella. >_>
That night we went with people from the tour to have supper ("siu ye" as you say in Cantonese). It was a sort of fondue party, at a local chain called 九佰碗 (Nine Hundred Bowls), and never had such a good time with fondue. My guess is that in HK it's just too crowded to spend all the time you want in a place of such quality without ruining yourself, and that in Montreal you simply don't have those sort of places which taste as good (I'll have to try looking in Chinatown when I come back).

That one goes into my wallpaper collection. <3 I thought I was going to miss the West Lake cruise because I wandered on my own the day before, but apparently some shit happened, and they couldn't have a boat for themselves (it *is* one of the top tourist attractions in China, so you can imagine the masses of tourists at mid-day). Therefore we went in the morning, which is more calm, not that much calm, but anyways.


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This page contains a single entry by Cedric published on April 24, 2005 5:50 PM.

China Pictures (Shanghai - 上海) (Sunday 2005-04-17/18) was the previous entry in this blog.

China Pictures (華東) (bis) is the next entry in this blog.

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