I'm back from fabulous Shanghai and the vacation of a lifetime. I never thought to say this, however: I'm salivating for an authentic, artery clogging American meal. After 10 days of eating the most exquisite and exotic foods, I am yearning for macaroni and cheese and a nice, juicy hamburger.
In addition, yours truly will never complain about traffic on the I-95 again. In Shanghai the road philosophy is this: The biggest vehicle gets the right of way. This means that bus and truck drivers can pretty well do what they please and pedestrians (including babies in strollers) are fair game. After you get the hang of crossing an intersection, strolling the streets becomes a wonderful adventure of sights, sounds, smells, and tastes. (Believe you me, I did not pass up a single opportunity of sampling street foods.)
Enough of the tourist talk already, here is why I love being back:
1) I can blog again. Blogs and wikipedia were blocked during my entire stay. I had hoped to post from abroad, but this was simply not possible.
2) The Internet is accessible at all times. (Access was frequently blocked, especially my university account).
3) Cable service is reliable. (Our cable service was pirated from the Philippines, which saw fit to block all but the religious channels during the last four days of our stay.)
4) No crippled beggars tugging at my heartstrings.
5) No fear of pickpockets (I lost my camera, dahlings.)
6) Clean air.
Here is why I loved Shanghai:
1) No graffiti
2) State of the art public transportation
3) The Chinese cuisine (Lots of Asian fusion foods as well)
4) Fabulous art museum
5) Bargain shopping
6) The excitement and energy of a new frontier
Despite my excitement over this visit and my sadness at learning about the Virginia Tech massacre, I am ecstatic to be home again. God Bless America.