Guest Bloggers Michelle Blood and Ashley Massey
We spent the morning in Zhu Jia Jian which is the town of the Zhu family. It is a watertown attached to Shanghai. Basically, it had a river with gondolas running through it. We walked through to the Main Street where we had a little while to shop and barter with the local people. Along the way there were food shops and accessory shops with the same thing on the Main Street. The street had a unique (bad), pungent odor. We had lunch in a local restaurant. Lunch consisted of pig knuckles, frog, a whole fish in sweet and sour sauce, crawdads, eggs, rice, soup, snow peas, and a beef dish.
The water town looked like a traditional ancient China. It is very popular for tourists and locals. The bridge behind us in the group picture is the oldest ancient bridge in Shanghai.
We went to the Shanghai Museum. There were many exhibitions including Calligraphy, Bronze artifacts, Jade artifacts, Currency, Dress, Furniture, Ceramics and more.
After the museum we ventured to the a Chinese garden in the middle of downtown Shanghai. Traditional Chinese gardens are a little different than our concept of an American garden. Chinese gardens are comprised of trees, sculptures, small man made lakes with fish and stones. The garden was well shaded and peacefully quiet. The Chinese gardens serve(d) as temple like areas, a place for meditation and relaxation. The YuYuan Garden, which was the one we visited, was a family owned garden. Therefore, it was a smaller garden.
Next, for dinner we had “hotpot.” At every seat was a small hot plate with a pot of boiling water sitting on top. In the center of the table there was raw meat and vegetables. The raw food was dipped into the boiling water for 15 to 60 seconds before it was done. Because every food was a mystery, it was interesting to both cook and taste the various foods.