Thursday, September 25, 2008

paradise on earth, or something

There's an old Chinese proverb that goes "Up in heaven is paradise, down on earth is Hangzhou". I'm not sure I agree with that. For one, I read that on a postcard that I bought in Hangzhou, so it might be a little biased. Secondly, I also read that about ANOTHER city in China called Suzhou, which is also near Shanghai. Third, it was so humid and hot that it felt more like the opposite of paradise. Especially since we inadvertently went on a 3 hour vertical hike up the largest mountain in the city with only 1 bottle of water. Oops.

That being said, my trip to Hangzhou was a lot of fun. Hangzhou is about an hour and a half outside of Shanghai, and the difference in landscape is extraordinary. Shanghai is often described as a concrete jungle; Hangzhou is straight up just a jungle.

I went to Hangzhou last weekend with Romy and our mutual friend Penny. Penny is in our graduate program, too, and a blonde, so we got a ton of attention. It's funny because Chinese people kept coming up to us and asking "Oh, didn't I just meet you at so-and-so a place an hour ago?" We'd tell them no, and they'd explain how the people they met looked just like us. I bet to the Chinese all us American girls start looking the same after a while.

We stayed at a hostel called "4 eyes backpackers" which was pretty nice. Actually, it wasn't really, but they had a cat that had recently had kittens so it seemed a lot nicer than it was, simply from the kitten presence. Here's me and momma kitteh, and yes, I came all the way to China to take pictures with cats.

I was surprised the hostel had the number 4 in their name because I have always heard that the Chinese consider it unlucky, but I also ate a dish that was described as "the fry Chinese make egg on chive" at the restaurant down the street (Penny had "the eggplant explodes in sauce"), so it could have just been some sort of translation error. Maybe they meant glasses?


KC said...

is that a DG shirt with Burberry nova check? Lol. I know that wasn't the comment you were looking for. Last year I made a list of 22 things I wanted to do before I turned 22, and one of the things (and I think the only one) I didn't do was take a hike. I wanted to do it in yosemite, also. But I never got around to it and the regret now hangs over my head and puts me to shame. :( cute cat!!

Andy said...

I saw the cute kitty pictures on FB. Too adorable.

Anonymous said...

Aren't hostels the place people usually go to get cut up and tortured before dying a slow miserable death? Did that happen to you? Keep in touch.

Strawberry said...

KC - heck ya it is! i was both the co-founder and a member of the Delta Gamma Classy Family Line...those were our Burberry family line letters.
if you still haven't gone to yosemite by the time i get home (july 09) i will TOTALLY go with you, i love yosemite

andy - meow


KC said...

I'll take you up on that offer. Knowing me I'll probably be sitting in the same spot on my couch in July 09. ;)