Layover Life: Shanghai, China

My life is one big adventure, and the time I got to spend in Shanghai, China definitely reinforced that! A week or so ago, I asked you guys on Instagram to tell me what I should do there because it was my first time visiting the country. Tons of suggestions poured in; Old Town, Yu Garden, Jing-an temple… but the most common response I received was The Bund!

I couldn’t disappoint you guys, so I went with a colleague shortly after we landed in the early evening. It was quite busy, but the view made up for the large crowds. As soon as we got there though, we could tell we were in for an interesting night- people kept staring at us and asking us to take photos with them!

After walking around the area for a bit, we tried to find a place to eat. There weren’t many restaurants where we were and when we did come across one, we couldn’t read the menus or communicate properly with the restaurant staff. The customers inside each of the places we checked out laughed at us, but we couldn’t blame them for our inability to order food. We were laughing at ourselves too!

Two restaurants and a 20 minute walk later, we stumbled upon a place called TongLe Yuan YuJia (I probably spelt that wrong). Using random hand gestures, pictures and google translate, we eventually placed our orders and received what we hoped was chicken and pork. With only chopsticks to eat with, you can imagine how out of place we looked. While you’re at it, try also imaging my facial expression when our server showed us to the toilets after we ate. There’s a first time for everything, but I never thought I’d ever have to squat and use a porcelain hole in the ground!

From there we went to grab ice cream at the Bund before heading back. The problem? It was 37 °C out, and the ice cream melted in our hands as soon as we left the parlour. We were covered in chocolate and vanilla, which drew more stares and laughter from the locals. Oh boy!

We decided to call it quits shortly after that, but then ran into the issue of grabbing a taxi. It took us a while to find someone who knew where our hotel was. The first cab driver we tried couldn’t understand us, but he did put the radio on and joined us in belting out Imagine Dragons’ “Believer” while he made a few calls. We were in stitches.

The following day I met a bunch of our crew in the lobby of our hotel. We decided to go to the “underground market” together. Similar to the shops in Bangkok, Thailand I found myself negotiating prices for things I didn’t need and ended up walking away with a pretty decent Emirates Airbus A380 model aircraft for 3x less than its price in Dubai. While it was a steal, fitting it into my suitcase was a real challenge. Moral of this story? Pack less clothing on layovers!!!!!!

The rest of my day was spent sleeping before the 9 hour flight back to Dubai and taking in the view from my hotel room. Oh the places I get to go!

Next Stop: Manchester, United Kingdom

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Disclaimer: My posts are my personal views and and do not represent the views of my company.