Ne Hao From Shanghai !!
May 9, 2005
Our last day in Shanghai. We will be flying out to Hong Kong around 4 p.m. this afternoon. Sort of nervous about being on our own in Hong Kong. Forrest (our national guide) has been such a Mother Hen to all of us. We haven't had to worry about anything. We will really miss him. All the people in our group have been wonderful. Everbody gets along great and mostly we have all been on time for everything. We have made some friendships which I am sure will last for a long time.
Shanghai is a bigger and much more modern (westernized) city than any of the others. We look across the Huangou River and see Pudong. Pudong is called the new Shanghai. It didn't even exist until 15 years ago. Now all you see are high rises. They even have a building that is something like the Space Needle in Seattle. It is the 2nd highest building in the world. Last night, Ollie, Raj, Uma & I rode the ferry over to Pudong and paid to ride the elevator to the top of this building. Great views of the city.
Yesterday afternoon we were set free for the balance of the day to do as we pleased. They dropped us off at a knock off market and had a great time shopping. Kenny, I bought you a couple Polo golf shirts (30 juan each), a Big Bertha driver (300 juan). Also bought 3 silk robes and a chinese outfit for Lily (400 juan). Was really not too sure about choosing the golf club, but asked for advice from one of our group who used to golf. Later spoke to another member of our group who lives on a golf course and he said you could always get it re-shafted if you wanted to. He also said they have a knock off of the new Taylor Made RX7 golf club. Kenny, would you be interested in that club?? Of course we will be leaving Shanghai today, but I'm sure they will have knock offs in Hong Kong too. We really had a great time yesterday shopping, taking the ferry to Pudong, going to the top of the high building, dinner at McDondald's, walking on the Bund after dark and seeing all the lights of the city and the hussle, bussle of the city in general. Bought three Rolex watches for $5 u.s.!!!Such a deal. At 9 p.m. we all met in Forrest's room for a little get together. Lots of beer, wine ,laughter and fun. Will really miss our little group.
It was not so much fun trying to pack all of the things we bought. We bought another suitcase and it is a piece of crap. The handle is already coming loose and we haven't even left the hotel. Forrest is trying to find a way to wrap the golf club to we can transport it in checked luggage.
Since I have a little extra time just now here is some interesting info on the one child policy in China that we were told by our guide:
In the cities, the wives are tested several times a year to see if they are pregnant. If they are found to be pregnant and do not have permission, they are forced to have an abortion. If the husband and wife work in different cities, the husband must carry papers proving that his wife is not pregnant. Some women get pregnant and they go off to the farms and hide with relatives until after the baby is born. This child then becomes a non-person and unless the family pays thousands of dollars to register him or her, they cannot work or do anything legally. I guess if they stay on the farm it doesn't matter,but they really can't go anywhere unless they are registered.
In most villages, even if a couple is married and has no children, they must get permission from the elders as to when they may have a child. If many couples want children in the same year, some may be told to wait a year or two to have a child.
Well this is all for now (We are starting to get a little homesick)
Love, Jean & Ollie
Hugs and Kisses to Lily!!