The thing about traveling to Asia is that a day is lost in the travel. It is already the 21st of December and all I did was arrive. Shanghai is surprisingly reminiscent of San Gabriel Valley in California. The first thing I noticed is how I comfortable I feel here already, and not only because I am Chinese, but because there are so many ethnic enclaves in LA. Driving through SGV feels more like Chinatown than the actual Chinatown in DTLA. It gave me some perspective of just how many mainland Chinese immigrants reside in SGV.
The first thing we did was drop off our stuff and go to the spa downstairs from my mother’s apartment for a Chinese massage. Afterwards, we headed back to her apartment, had some delicious beef potato cabbage soup for dinner (there really is no name for this) and headed to bed. I was beat. My mother lives in a secure complex of high-rise apartments. It’s conveniently located next to the metro and is a 20 minute walk to The Bund and Nan Jing West shopping areas.
To my unpleasant surprise, I learned that my father called my mother and asked her to pass on the news that he would not make it after all to Shanghai. I have not been able to reach him to find out more information. However, to my pleasant surprise, I was informed that we had to go to sleep early because we are getting up at 5am the next day to catch a 7am train to Beijing. You can imagine how wonderful that sounds to a jetlagged traveler… sense the sarcasm. Nah, in all honestly, I was very excited and I happily crawled into bed at 11pm Shanghai time.
Tomorrow… to Beijing!