Hangzhou, China ~ 13th – 14th September 2012
Thursday, 13th September 2012 – This morning is a late start for us, we are given a chance to sleep in, and be ready by 10.30 for us to be driven to the airport to take a flight to Hangzhou (approx 2.5 hrs). Normally this would be a short flight across the country, today we had 2 hours of delays while sitting boarded on the plane before even taking off. We were now served a meal on the plane with Rice, vegetables, fruit and bun roll, though no drinks were served. Arriving in Hangzhou at 6.30pm. Today felt like a waste at this point.
On a lighter note, Hangzhou is one of the most popular places in China for domestic tourists and although it’s a big city, the beautiful natural sights and laid-back locals give it a surprisingly relaxed feel. We are taken by bus straight to the Market Street to share dinner together at a more upmarket restaurant, the food was amazing with a fantastic variety and lots of drinks! After dinner the group browsed through the market place, I was a little drunk from to much beer at dinner (and a wee travel sick from being suck on a plane all afternoon), as I stumped through the Dynasty Roads (that I thought I heard were Dinosaur roads, the thought excited my drunk self). Richard soon after ordered us taxi’s back to the hotel arriving around 10pm, I passed out and slept very well this night.
Friday, 14th September 2012 – I wake up this morning worried that something has happened to my mummy, I rush down to the lobby in my pajamas and call my mum on Viber using the hotel WiFi… She picks up! She’s alright, but mums had a similar dream about her own mother who passed away recently… We really must miss each other, I’ve been gone two weeks now, I am missing home a little bit… and Cooper.
Today we will be taking a bike ride along the trails surrounding the beautiful West Lake, the focus of many Chinese legends, songs and poems. It is 300Yuen ($45AU) refunded deposit to hire the bikes, we road a total of 10km this morning. Our first stop was 4km along West Lake where we admired a Pagoda, fish that eat popcorn, local buildings and old town bridges. Peter, Judy and I ride further around the lake as Bea and Laura take a Ferry Tour.
Later on we road back to the Market Village we visited last night. Laura, Bea and go shopping together, we all buy matching handbags! I also picked up some gifts for friends and a silver ring. We found an upstairs drinking garden pub and enjoyed a few beers together before arriving back at the hotel to depart at 6pm for the Impressions West Lake Night Show with Bea, Laura, Russell and Richard.
The Impression at West Lake was a magnificent show of Lights and Colour by Zhang Yimou, an absolute HIGHLIGHT. The show is simply amazing. The music is fantastic and really its a show that you need to see once in a lifetime. Coloured and exceptionally well done. Its something special and the performers are extremely professional, dancing and acting on the water lake.
After the night show Richard took us to a Local lakeside karaoke bar, we shared many beers together and finally encouraged Russell to have ONE glass of beer. We all must of looked a little jealous of our Chinese patrons singing Karaoke in Mandarin, Richard suggested taking us to a Private Karaoke Bar to sing and perform in a room with just ourselves and be waited upon. BRILLIANT!
A hop, skip and a jump later we are at the bar, I’m already tipsy before arrival as we are greeted like music/movie stars and lead to our own private room. We order drinks, popcorn (that I drunkenly knock over), variety of hot chips plate and lots and lots of singing to English vocal music! Rnb, Rock and Roll, Pop!
We’ve been singing for two hours to our hearts content, but we all know their is an early start on tomorrow for our travels to Shanghai, we take a taxi home and in bed by 1am! WE ROCK!