If i wrote this at the time i would probably suggest Shanghai was my favourite city on this mini break quick fire round of stop offs. Though i wouldn’t have known why, it was something about the sense of the place, a comfortable something. I dont think it can be the large river and a nostalgic reminder of the close to home Thames river, quite a lot of large cities come complete with a water feature, be it a lake or a river. I haven’t noticed this bringing back thoughts of either London or Zurich and so unjustifiably raising them up above all other, none water feature having, cities. So it was something else. It was discernibly more compact than the sprawl of Beijing, with a definite sense of a centre. It was cleaner and newer than Beijing or at least this more compacted central part that i was frequenting was.
Shanghai was the only city during my trip to China that felt like it could become home. The substantive issues of language,work and the sweltering heat placed to one side, Shanghai felt like one of those places people are relatively fortunate if they get to call it home. Who knows if that’s true, probably people who go on to spend more than just 3 days there. There was nothing notable that was visited or seen white there.
There is the bund – the riverside bit where most of the views of the high up sky line can be taken in. There was also an Old Shanghai Street Market bit, that ended up being walked to (the benefit of being more compact was the ability to practically explore by foot). I had a McDonalds there, wasn’t feeling adventurous at the time, aside from that there were some older looking buildings, though it all rather had the air of something Disney might have done.. A sort of mock old.. perhaps it had all just been maintained or renovated too well. There were little parks dotted about where shade and resting up could be sought out on a bench beneath a tree that was casting its shadow in the right direction. Generally i would describe it as an off mix of nothing so much to see but well worth experiencing.
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