I also made my first trip to Shanghai, China on the same work trip. We stayed in Shanghai a
few more days than Taipei, which is good since I enjoyed Shanghai more than Taipei.
Added some of Joe Yi's pics too.
Shanghai Pudong airport is all pretty much brand new. It's actually quite impressive. Of course,
as usual, I enjoyed the signs almost as much as the city. Here you see "Hourly Hotel" as one of the
first signs I saw in Shanghai.
I was surprised to see Budweiser signs so prevalent around China. Our guys there tell me that Bud is
one of the more popular beers in China. Unbelieable. Selling rice crap in China...
The view from our hotel (Radisson Shanghai New World) looking down Nanjing Road to the Bund. That's the
Shanghai Number 1 Department Store on the left. Yeah, that's right, that's the name of it.
This is the New World shopping centre in front of our hotel, across from Renmin Square. Of course
it rained every day we were in Shanghai. I'm going to start calling it New Portland.
Joe Yi, my sales counterpart, lived in Taiwan for a year growing up. While there, he developed a taste
for these red beans. McDonald's makes these red bean pies and Joe made us go to two different
McDonald's to try these. A yuan (Renminbi) is about 1/8th of a US dollar. The price here shows the
same thing that The Economist's Big Mac index tells us - that the yuan is undervalued.
Giant Coke sign outside a building on Nanjing. Coke was one of the first foreign investors into
China in the 30s.
I took this to show a "road crossing" of bikes, scooters, and people all crossing in the same spot.
The Analog Devices Shanghai office is in the French Concession portion of the city. This is the site
of the 1st National Congress of the Communist Party in China, just down the road from our office.
I thought the fact that I had a red jacket and red toque was appropriate.
This is my counterpart in China - Justin Zhao with me at the historic site.
Justin is not only an excellent FAE in Shanghai for us, he's also an excellent host,
as he showed Joe and I around the city and took great care of us while we were in his country.
Justin took us to the ADI Shanghai year-end party. Because Chinese celebrate the end of the lunar calendar,
offices there have a similar tradition of company parties (just at the end of January instead of mid December).
Because the office is so young and energetic, they split up into 4 teams and each team did some manner
of production. This team did a jazzy dance for us.
This team did a bit of a sales skit.
Here is Justin, as part of his team's sales skit. I think he's dressed as a woman, and I can't quite
recall what the intention of the skit was.
Shanghai has something like 13.5 million people living there. A large portion of the city has
grown in the last decade only. This area is called Pudong and is across the Huangpo river from Puxi,
the main part of the city. It has almost exclusively been built in the last 10 years so all of the
buildings are brand new.
I'm not quite sure what this meant, but one of our customers' facilities was inside this zone.
The Jinmao building is the tallest building in China. You can't see the top through the fog and rain,
but it is quite a large building, coming in at 420.5 m.
Justin took us to a very famous restaurant - Quanjude (Beijing Duck) in the French Concession.
The restaurant claims it has served over 2 million ducks. Renee, I thought you'd like this picture.
Justin at the entryway of Quanjude. You can see the inlaid picture of Donald Duck.
There were also pictures of Mao eating at a Beijing Duck chain in Beijing and one of George Bush Sr as well.
Did I mention that it rained a little? Here we are at Xiangyang (pronounced Shee-ang-Yang) where
the shopping was mostly knock-off Prada and Louis Vuitton bags along with fake Rolexes and Tagheuer
watches, and some pretty well-done North Face jackets. The vendors were pretty agressive, often
not letting you walk away even after you've basically insulted them with how little you're offering.
My brother Denis, who is notorious for low-balling sellers, would have had a blast.
In addition to the vendors, we sorted out that there is an equal job opportunity in being a referral.
People will walk up to you and try to see what you want. Then, they will approach vendors on your behalf
and try to find the product you want. This guy wouldn't leave Joe alone. He actually got Joe a pretty
good deal on two purses, but Joe still wound up buying them from someone else because he didn't want to
pay the middleman. "That's the reason I wanted to shop here", he said. "I don't want to pay anyone
to be in the middle".
I laughed so hard when Joe was dickering with this guy. First of all, the guy's voice was
ridiculous. Second, Joe kept telling him that he had no money and the guy wouldn't let it go.
I actually took video showing the proceedings. Great video .
This was actually funny. Joe walked into this store and the lady led him into this back room
that we had to duck to get into. Then, once he got in, the lady outside promptly replaced the shelves
and continued to sell her wares. Did I mention that Joe bought so much stuff that he had to also
buy a piece of roll-away knock-off Samsonite luggage to cart it all home?
The market entrance.
I thought this was funny even though I have no idea what they're selling. Probably jewelry, but
I just enjoyed the name.
I spent part of my day off touring Shanghai. And, according to the 1000 Things to See Before You
Die (Thanks Denis and Leah!), one of the things to do in Asia is to see the Shanghai Museum. This
is the museum (conveniently just across the park from my hotel), which is designed to be in the shape
of an important piece of Chinese bronze called a ding . I suppose this is what $700 Mill buys you.
So my sister Renee is going to lose it on me, but I saw this and thought of her. This is used to hold
hot food or tea. The item to be warmed goes in the middle and hot water goes in the other two holes.
So, Renee the reason I thought of you is you said that when your students draw you, they always draw you
with a nose ring. And I guess when this Chinese ancient people mold bronze oxen, they do it with a
nose ring. I know, it's a weird mental connection, but it made me laugh.
A big bronze drum. Yes, I REALLY wanted to beat this drum, but I resisted. The fact that I had to front
a $40 deposit for the self-guided audio tour thing made me think that if they threw me out, I'd be out $40.
From a more academic side, the Shanghai Museum is world famous for its bronzes, with some of their pieces
dating back to the 21st century BC! Most of their bronzes were used for food and wine and normally, if
you were a big important person, you'd have more than less important people.
Seriously, this is a salmon fish-skin suit. As it turns out (here's my ethnocentrism coming out), I didn't
realize how many nationalities actually make up China. The Han are the majority and there are more than 56
minority ethnic groups representing over 40 million people! The fish-skin suit comes from one of those
This is outstanding. This comes from around 500 BC, and is actually (my assertion here), the world's
first fanny pack. The card actually said waist coin holder and I just about fell over laughing.
Who says our Canadian Indians were the first to make canoes? These looked pretty sweet and were
thousands of years old.
This is one of my favourite pieces. The head piece looks like a yak. The audio guide said something
to the effect that this is a costume that the young women will make to try to persuade a husband
of their skills. Of course, I thought of Napoleon Dynamite: "you know, skills. Like nunchuk skills,
computer hacking skills, yak-headdress-making skills..."
This would win a U of S Agro prize for best belt buckle. It's only 2300 years old.
Touring Old Town Shanghai
After I left the museum, I wandered around the older part of Shanghai. Before I got there, this is
actually in a brand new part of the city. I thought, "Hmm, they're building more skyscrapers. Yup."
Then, I looked again and realized they're actually building skyscrapers using bamboo scaffolding. Wow!
In order of the restaurant chains I saw the most of: McDonald's, KFC, and Burger King. I liked
the Year End lanterns on this KFC.
I wandered into Dongtai Lu antique market, a really odd collection of strange "antiques", complete
with Mao memorabilia, odd old teapots, and just old things that these people will try to rip you
off for. For the most part, these are mass produced items trying to look old, but sometimes
you'll find a treasure, like THIS
which was found in a small Shanghai dealer.
I liked this sign: "Welcome to the shop! If the price of the tea sold in this shop is higher
than that of the same kind tea in other main tea shops in Shanghai city, we promise to return
the money higher part of the price to you and give 50g tea to you!"
This was quite a humorous shop. I was trying to bargain for a strange piece for my friends the Diskos
at this woman's shop. I asked how much, she said (or rather she punched on a calculator) 350 (about $45).
In my brother's style, I punched back on her calculator 20. She laughed at me, said "joke price" a few times
and then she grabbed a figurine of a bull, pointed to the bull's head and then to its ass, as if to
say that my offer was bullshit. This picture is actually of a sweet drinking helmet that I almost bought
as well. The funny part was that even after bargaining for awhile I couldn't get the woman down below 100,
so instead I walked two shops over and bought a similar item for less than 100 yuan. Then I pointed at my
new item to the woman a few stalls over and smiled. I'm such a punk.
Across the street from the antique market was the Flower, Bird, Fish, and Insect Market. I thought
this was worth the trip, so I wandered through, only to find strange live insects in jars, cats,
dogs, fish, and other less-common animals in cages. It was a little weird actually.
Some of the fish.
I followed a really fun walking tour through the Old Town, using my Lonely Planet guide. This is
a dumpling shop along Dajing Lu. The lineup out the shop was super long, so the food must have
been good. Note the face masks. I actually saw a lot of these. I can't say for sure, but I think
some of it started with the SARS thing and people have continued to do it for health reasons.
Mom, this one's for you. This is also along Dajing Lu in Old Town Shanghai.
Still, one of the more common ways to transport goods in the city are three-wheeled bikes.
I think this is salted cod. Yuck.
So, the Yuyuan area of Old Town is sort of like a Disney-fied China. It's more than a little tacky
as the local government has tried to "clean up" an older bazaar area, and instead has turned it into
something similar to Leavenworth's Bavarian town - a little forced and not quite right. However
I did find an excellent steamed dumpling shop so that became my lunch stop. That's the mid-lake Teahouse
in the foreground, and I think that's actually Jinmao Tower in the background.
A great brand of coffee.
The Yuyuan gardens (Ming dynasty era - although rebuilt and renovated)
near the bazaar were nice, but the cold, wet weather, combined with a few too
many people in the market meant that I didn't stay as long as I would have liked.
Great dragon on one of the building's roofs.
Hmm, do I want to be happy or mild? Are they mutually exclusive?
This is the Exquisite Jade Rock, although I couldn't quite sort out why that was important.
A nice view down a shopping street.
Skiing in Shanghai
My friend Justin invited me to join he and his girlfriend Mandy Lu to join them at a local ski
area. It turns out that the ski area is indoors and the snow is man-made. We went for some
evening skiing on a Friday (it's open until 1 am!). We rented gear (skis, boots, poles, ski pants,
ski jacket, gloves, and socks) and headed out to the ski field!
Here are Justin and Mandy about to get on the moving walkway to get to the first level. It was
Mandy's first time and she did an excellent job of learning the snowplow.
This is me going along the moving walkway (like at an airport). The "trees" were even covered
with some kind of a white foam to look like snow.
If you are a beginner, you would get off at the end of the moving walkway (about 100 m in length and
10m of elevation). Otherwise, you get on the chain-driven pommel lift up a few more meters.
The view from the top of the 'hill'. The orange hose on the ground in front of me is what
sprayed the "snow" onto the cement hill. The total descent is about 42 m I think. Kudos to the first
person to accurately describe the chemical makeup of the "snow".
Some of the "snow" being blown onto the slope.
My last day in Shanghai I wanted to see the Oriental Pearl Tower (shown here in pink) as well as the Bund.
A view up the tower. Definitely an odd-looking building for sure.
The obligatory view up my nose and up the tower.
View down to the Bund across the Huangpo river.
The view across to the Jinmao tower, which is actually slightly higher than the Oriental Pearl
Tower. The OP Tower is mostly just a tourist tower and TV tower, but you too can rent space
in one of the weird ball thingies if you want.
One of the many freighters plying the river.
I took a really wacky spacey tunnel ride underneath the river to get to the Bund (Puxi side of the river).
It was a little surreal as there was a laser light show and you sat in a car and the car moved you to the
other side. It was billed as a "Tourist Tunnel", but it was more odd than touristy. Highly recommended
to anyone without epilepsy. This is the famous Peace Hotel on the Bund.
The equally famous Palace Hotel with the Peace next to it. Basically the Bund is a collection of really nice
old foreign-designed and foreign-built buildings in the heart of Shanghai. How colonial and not really Chinese!
But, the buildings are nice and are mostly in really good shape. They are 2,000 years old, but they're more than
Jason Leuschen, you'll be thrilled to hear that even now, I continue to get approached to take pictures for people
all the time no matter where I'm travelling. Just after I snapped this picture of Shanghai's first mayor Chen Yi,
this guy comes from out of the blue to ask for a picture. Then, he proceeds to wander all of the place until he
finds exactly the right shot. THEN, he walks across the park to another shot he wanted and fussed for awhile.
If I could have said, "Eat it" in Chinese, I think I would have.
London has the Big Ben, Shanghai has the Big Ching. This is atop the Customs House, still on the Bund.
A great sign on the Bund. I enjoy in particular: "Any activity or action against social order or
repugnant to the eye is prohibited". I also enjoyed: "Any person if without license... is not allowed
to carry any social activities."
Very impressive building, the Hongkong Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) built this building in
1923 and it had been called the "finest building east of Suez". Inside is a beatiful zodiac and tiled
mosaic but I wasn't allowed to take pictures.
The view across to Pudong. As I mentioned, I wasn't really homesick for Portland with such
wonderful winter weather in Shanghai.
More evidence that Amway is taking over the world. Also, in both of ADI's offices in Taipei and
in Shanghai, there was an Amway dealer in that tower. Eerie.
Christmas picture 2006? Renee might like it better than last year's...
I took this for Natalia. I have no idea why there is a marble Haagen Dazs plaque mounted onto this
tree, but there it is, right on the Bund.
TV at the bus stops.
The Shanghai Super Number 1 Toy Store is also quite funny.
Alleyway from Nanjing Road. This is a MAIN commercial pedestrian walkway I'm on, and this is
the sketchy alleyway just off it.
One of the reasons I was so stoked to go to Shanghai was that I've been meaning to try out the
Mag Lev train that goes to Pudong airport since it went into service in 2003. Well, when it opened,
it was running at 280 km/hour. I'm not sure what they tweaked, but it was running at 430 km/hr top
speed when we rode the 30 km to the airport in 8 mins. I tried to take pictures from the train
but unsurprisingly, they were blurry. This is a shot of the interior of the train where the speed
and time are posted. For more info, go HERE .
Yup, I don't quite get this one. Something is lost in translation.
Another great one.
Joe's pics in Shanghai
The Oriental Pearl Tower with the Huangpo river and the rest of the smog-filled city.
Joe, Justin, and I after having a wonderful meal.
A better shot of the Pearl Tower with shipping traffic around it.
Did I mention that it poured the whole time we were in Shanghai. The majority of traffic
through a lot of the city is bikes.
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