Crazy to think we are starting our 10th week in China, wow. Our apartment, neighborhood and surroundings are starting to feel like normal with the job front still remaining the same. Some highlights lately have been a bowling night with some fellow teachers. Always a good time as Team Strand dominated and made it interesting by introducing beer frames. We took a walk through the old alleyways behind People’s Square last weekend. They are called ‘hutongs’ and are very old residential areas. They are very primitive with stone water basins in the alleyways instead of inside. It was quite an experience and we felt like we were really in China and not just in a huge city.
We went for a run in the park near our apartment and got some strange looks as you don’t see runners in the city often. We had to run around the park about 5 times to make it a decent workout. In the parks there are always older woman doing choreographed dances and usually a man offering haircuts. We are usually guaranteed a laugh walking through the park. We ventured around our neighborhood more and found some more amazing restaurants and markets. We have included some pictures from our local market and neighborhood to give you an idea of our daily sites. Enjoy!
Here are the 2 entrances into our complex. One is a circular walking gate that locks at night and usually has an old man sharpening knives or cleaning fish. The other has our friendly security guards on watch all times of the day. So, Mom, no need to worry about us, we are very safe! Shanghai is actually a very safe city in general.
This is the outside of our apartment building. There are clothes drying the wind everyday. Also a biker in action. There are so many bikers and people on motor bikes everywhere.
Here are the local restaurants right outside of our building. The entrance to the local market is in there as well. Again notice all the bikes and scooters parked on the sidewalks.
Our local market, fresh vegetables and dried vegs and beans.
Live fish and fresh fruit.
Yes, these are live chickens for your choosing! The amount of recycling, boxes or whatever someone is transporting is amazing on these bikes.
More bikes and our egg lady. Yes, she is sleeping, it is a rough job.
Homemade dumplings and the tofu station.
Homemade noodles and clams.
Raw ducks ready to be smoked and roasted and steamed buns.