Shanghai Pudong International Airport offers some really great views......
.....my personal favourite is looking out the rear tail cone window of a 747 flying away from it!!
Well.....dear sister is now safely on her way from San Francisco to Buffalo and should have arrived as of this writing.
What can I say?? Shanghai sucked thee moment I got there.
Hadta meet my sister at the airport at 10:50pm last Sunday night. My plane from Bangkok landed at 4:00pm.
Tired from less than four hours of sleep my last night in Bangkok, hungover, and just not terribly glad to be in Shanghai, I wearily head towards the MagLev train to go to East Nanjing Road downtown, where I desperately need a recharge for my used-up pre-paid SIM card, and a couple other things.
Again, NOT trying to offer excuses, but I was deathly jet-lagged, severely tired from lack of sleep, and hungover outta my skull. All wanted was a pint after I got my pre-paid fone recharge and just to mellow out forra bit before I hafta go back to the airport and meet my sister at 10:50pm.
Well, after looking around vacantly whilst standing in the middle of the road in the pedestrian mall that is East Nanjing road, I couldn't find a typical, normal bar!! So some girl comes up to me and asks me if I need help. "Yes, I'm looking forras place to just grab a pint and decompress!" So she tells me to follow her to this coffee shop that serves P.G.O. (beer). She somehow invites herself along, but I don't really give a shit. So, grab a couple pints of Carlsburg and this girl orders two glasses of vino. Kill those, then I determine that I gotta catch the last Maglev back to the airport to meet my sister. Grab the tab and head out and I then..........whoa............whhhooooooa.........
What the FUCK??
600 Yuan??? exsqueeze me???
By This time, after seeing all the people selling fake Rolexs on East Nanjing Road, and all the other trash and shit that walk around that street, I realised that I had been scammed.
Uhhhhh.....yeeaah, refuse to pay, call the police?? Don't think so, as A) - HAD to be there at Shanghai Airport under direct orders to meet my sister the moment she got off the plane NO MATTER WHAT and B) - What the fuck good was THAT gonna do anyways except waste time???
I mean....the Chinese think the Yanks are behind the whole "Dali Clique" issue in Tibet.....ballistic missile triggers "accidentally" sent by the U.S. to Taiwan (the best friends of the Chinese) and the cops are probably on this take anyways!!
I call the police.....and I woulda been the one in the clink with my organs being harvested!!!!
Live and learn......at least I hope that her kickback was a hefty percentage.....
So, meet my sister at the airport (plane was 35 minutes late due to a minor typhoon in Hong Kong), and she doesn't get out of the baggage area until an hour later.
"Uhhh.....they lost my (and fifty other people's) bags, E."
So dear sis goes 36 hours without clean clothing (as the shit that they sold on the high street there would have made thee most dowdy grandmother cringe with fashion fear!!!) and is NOT a happy camper.
So, we don't do a whole hell of a lot the first three days except hang at The Blue Frog pub around the corner from the first hotel we stayed at in the French Concession district.
Pretty much, this city made New York City look like a bunch of emotional, caring, loving people!! Shanghai made Boston look like its residents sincerely cared about your well being!!!!
Just total unfriendly assholes (and I'm NOT just saying that because I got Shanghai'd)......basically, if you are not ready to be scammed......or you don't wish to buy anything from someone....or don't wish to give someone some money.....??
Then FUCK YOU!!!! Go ask someone else for assistance. From the person on the street to the clerk at the convenience store.....same attitude.
That is LITERALLY the attitude of the vast majority of people in this city.
Guangzhou this place AIN'T....thass for sure!!!
So Sis eventually gets her baggage, and on Wednesday night, we go and grab some food at a place that my sister wished to try because it was listed in Lonely Planet.
I ordered some sort of beef item, and my sister ordered some sort of pork item....
Errmmm.......I had never had meat-flavoured JELL-O before:
Man, THAT sent the 'ole Yum-O-Meter right offa the Goddamm scale!!
So, shortly after that, we returned to the hotel I picked (the Seagull on The Bund........errrmmm.....just don't try this place......we'll leave it at that. Great location.....great views......everything else was just gross), got captivated watching World Championship Snooker for an hour, and decided that we had to go out somewhere.
Sis suggests this place listed in Lonely Planet called "Pirates" that was waaaay the hell out in the West corner of the French Concession district off of the beaten track. It was described as fun and unpretentious.....and I didn't really care, so I said "Sure!! Why not?"
Well.....Pirates wasn't there anymore. Instead, this little cafe-bar called "Anar" was there that had just opened up, like, a week ago, and even though it was, like, 1:30am....they didn't care!! They let us in, served us, and tossed us a few drinks on the cuff and we sat around hanging out with these folks for a while......
Don't remember much of what happened......just several toasts.....then swearing that we were all BFF....then brothers....then they play Uyghur song for us.....then I think we somehow made it back to our hotel well after sunrise....
They were Uyghurs (pronounced "whee-gurs")......not genuine Shanghaiese ("Shanghaian"??)......ahhhhh......NO WONDER they were so kind!!!!!
Can't remember details.....but here's a very brief pictorial of the night:
More observations and some National Geographic-type pics next post!!