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Monday, May 25, 2009

Day Two - Shanghai/Nanning

Day two... We woke up at 3 am (Shanghai time)... Despite our best efforts we fell asleep at 8:00 last night. No complaints about the hotel room at all... Pretty deluxe considering some of the stories we heard... Didn't get to revel in it much, but did enjoy the king size bed for the somewhat short night... Luckily it was evening in Canada and we got a little bit of time to Skype and MSN some of the friends and family. We went for breakfast in the hotel at 6:30... just a bit of time to kill from 3:00... After our spectacular buffet breakfast we decided to go for a walk and explore the area.

We walked through a local park and tracked through some local streets and explored the street merchants... The locals were as fascinated with us as we were with them... :) On the tour we went around a corner and low and behold... One of Joyanne's dreams came true... Stahhhhbucks... Got a couple of obligatory pics in front (when we thought it was closed) and with the $38Y (about $6 CDN) Dark Berry Mocha Frappachino... :) Not quite the same bevey that we get in the homeland let me tell you, but good all the same... Don't recall the frap having quite as many crunchy chocolate cookie bits in it but hey... When in Rome... :) After we got back from our walk we took a little nap and caught a taxi to the airport for our flight to Nanning.

What else can we tell you about Shanghai... When they tell you the air is thick they aren't kidding... Quite a bit of smog here and you can certainly feel it in the eyeballs after a while... First experience with the local driving customs caught Joyanne a little off guard. To say that it was a white-knuckle ride from the airport to the hotel doesn't do it justice... Get in and hang on... :) We have been pleasantly surprised by how easy it is to communicate here... The hotel (and Starbucks) staff speak English very well. Have to brush up on my WWE events to make more small talk... It is apparently VERY popular here with the younger adult male staff.

We arrived in Nanning at 10:30pm and made it to our hotel by 11:30. Our guide David met us at the airport and filled us in on the next day's events. Also took the time to brush up our basic Mandarin phrases during the drive. We had heard many wonderful things about David from others and are pleased to report that they were all true. He is very personable and caring... "We are going to meet OUR little girl"... Our hotel room here is also very nice. We are staying at the Wharton International Hotel, but the beds are as hard as everyone had told us... I don't mind them at all, but Joyanne is trying to get used to them... Everything else is fantastic though. We unpacked and ordered some room service... The Won Ton soup is awesome... BLT had some nice flair to it as well... With pickle and fried egg onboard as well as B, L, and T... :) We finally made it to bed a little after 1:00am to try and get some sleep for the big day ahead.

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