Springtime in China

A brief summary of two trips I organized with some local singles.

We first went to Moganshan, a three hour bus ride west of Shanghai. The first afternoon we walked for around an hour towards a lake our innkeeper mentioned.  We passed by a tanning or some type of smokehouse and mushroom farms along the way.  The second day some of us rented bikes and rode around, stopping by random trailheads.  One led to tea leaf fields, while another led to a poorly kept mausoleum.  Yet another road led to thick bamboo forests, with Zach in the background. A rather relaxing, nature-oriented trip without the mosquitos that plagued Anji last fall.

Our second trip was to Taohua (peach blossom) island 4.5 hours by bus from Shanghai, followed by a thirty minute ferry ride.  I couldn’t help but take a picture of a murse that many Chinese men carry, since it seems effeminate to Americans.  The main draws were a beach and some historical towers and Buddhist monastery.  A few of us played ultimate frisbee and chewed up the sand.  Wish I had taken pictures before and after the damage.  Our first night we took a good 20 minutes, but finally lit up a traditional lantern.

We paid to go up to a pagoda, which itself was quite disappointing with nothing to see inside, but with a decent view, including a monastery, that would’ve been better without the smog.  Also, only in China will they set up a carnival shooting gallery by a historical tower and monastery.  The next day we tried to sneak onto the beach, as it wasn’t worth the money they wanted to charge us for entering before 5:30 since they didn’t use the money to clean up the debris where we sneaked towards.  We were caught, but never paid and just walked towards the main beach before 5:30.

For me, a highlight was going to the only free thing in the area: a Buddhist monastery.  Seems like the best things in China are free anyway.  Josh got talking about religion with one of the monks until we had to leave from the ferry.



About mhsquire

Oral English teacher in Hunan province.
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