French Concession Self Guided Tour

Today I leapt out of bed at 9:00. OL barely stirred. But by 9:30 sleepy guy and I were downstairs at breakfast. Where he nearly spilled my coffee.

I had a red bean paste bun. Same as yesterday on the rest.

Decided to do the French Concession today. Started from Chang Shu Lu station. Went to the Russian Orthodox Mission church that the communists turned into a laundry mat.  Gotta love atheism.

Onto the Hengshan Moller Villa Hotel, which resembles a castle cake.

Stunning architecture. Purportedly designed by the owner’s 12 year old daughter. Lovely grounds too. Koi pond.

We saw the Okura Garden Hotel which has Palladio inspired gardens and original building. The monolithic hotel added on later is a stark contrast in soullessness.

The Jinjiang hotel contains the former Grosvenor House which was the swankiest pre WWII residence. It’s totally gatsby-esque.

And Ofc, I fell up the stairs there. The hotel attendant turned and left the room.I seem to have that affect on people.the I’m done after this girl syndrome.

We lunched at a Cheng Cheng’s Art Salon which has delish food and is a renovated colonial building.

Had sautéed eggplant, braised beef in soy sauce and sweet and sour pork.

With rose petal tea. Omg so good! Best lunch yet on trip.

On the street outside a man struts by in his silk boxers and wife beater. What a sight.

Table cloth and embroidered napkin setting the tone at the table. I sat in a ginormous chair.

Listened to women talk about their family lineage. And how it was 38 centigrade yesterday so they couldn’t do anything here. They all professed to want to do stuff but have no idea where to tell the taxi to go. Try trip advisor dumbass.

Next we explored Sun Yat-sen’s former residence and museum.

Worth the 20 yuan to see what a home from the past century looked like. Loved their gratuitous little giftshop where I bought a tshirt for 50 yuan and fan for 45 yuan.

We saw Zhou Enlai’s residence next for free. It was cool to see but nothing spectacular.

Poor OL. I went to go pee, but the door wouldn’t shut. So I had to ask him to come watch the door. But it creaked open so OL  had to hold the door shut in the toilet while I peed. No sink to wash hands btw.

Then we searched for Tianzifang, a shikumen house converted into shops, galleries, restaurants, and coffee houses.

Tshirts go for 168yuan. Too expensive for my tastes. Silk scarves are 2000 yuan.

Then a thunderstorm rips the sky open. Torrents of rain. Gunpowder thunderclaps. Lights flicker. We huddle under covered sections. Intense stormage.

Store owners refuse to bargain here. Unless cheap shop. But so overpriced. We get exhausted from standing to wait out the rain and start walking in it.

Not much we’re interested in buying so walk to dapuqiao subway and come back to hotel.

OL watches Flight Plan while I do laundry in the sink and import pics to iPad and type blog up.

Next we headed to the nearby restaurant for dinner.  I had pork in soy sauce with thin pancakes, and delicious chicken soup that was octopus.

OL had green pepper and potatoes and eggplant stir fried together. Came to 67yuan which is ten bucks. For dinner. For two. Nice.

A man walks in in pajama pants and shirt to order takeout. Sits while it is being made. Hysterical.

Wifi not working. Grrr. No idea what is wrong.

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2 Responses to French Concession Self Guided Tour

  1. berry says:

    Your trip is so informative and interesting. I can’t wait to read each day. The food pics are yummy and the land so gorgeous. At times. Keep them coming.

    • Thanks. I decided to take a break from writing novels during my vacay and just have a travel blog. It let me write everyday but in a totally different sphere. Fun experiment. Also made me fresh to come home and query the next novel. 🙂

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