Almost A Weekend

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Since our first weekend here was spent with Jesse and I sweating, shivering, visiting the toilet and getting good and tired of Chinese TV as soon as possible, this second weekend I planned on seeing some touristy Shanghai.  Saturday, we ended up spending much of the day at Jesse’s work, which we’re starting to realize may not be so very unusual in the future.  On Sunday, we did finally make it out and about, despite an awesome, heavily raining morning.  We started out the morning getting coffee, then went to a Manchurian restaurant where we had dumplings of every color and flavor and stewed pork knuckle.  It was very good and only a little weird.  The knuckle came with a bright orange bendy-straw to suck the marrow out of the bone, but by the time Jesse got up the nerve to try this, it had cooled off and was gross and disturbing.  We plan to take Momm and Dad there, maybe they’ll be braver.

Though our stomachs (bowels, really) are still not normal and mine was acting up on Sunday (no, it was not the sight of all the other patrons slurping at their bendy-straws) we still decided to go for a further stroll to Jing-An Temple.  It was originally built 300-something AD or BC, a long time ago, anyway, but like almost every temple we visited in Japan, had burned down completely sometime in the last 200 years and was re-built.  During the cultural revolution, it was stripped of it’s Buddhist status (whatever that means, the guidebook said it) and used as a plastics factory.  Plastics factory!

It had lovely woodwork and the fancy tiled roofs and gilded Buddhas here and there, but was crowded with visitors and construction workers and was dirty and concreted everywhere.  There were many people bowing with smoking sticks and the glossy glass and steel skyscrapers all around the temple made for an awesome juxtaposition.  Of course, we forgot the camera.

All’s well, though we would both like to know when we’ll stop having crampy episodes.

Here’s a picture of Olivia and Daniel.  I wish I were home to hug them.

Olivia and Daniel

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