topblog Ivoire blogs

01/11/2013

This morning I awoke at 7am without an alarm. This must be a sign, I never get up before 10 without serious coaxing. This was possibly what gave me the confidence and courage to go forth (well back really) and find the gate into the Lama temple. With the


This morning I awoke at 7am without an alarm. This must be a sign, I never get up before 10 without serious coaxing. This was possibly what gave me the confidence and courage to go forth (well back really) and find the gate into the Lama temple. With the guidance of a China tour guide I did just that. It was swamped with tourists and locals (I'm assuming) waiting for it to open. There was even one guy who appeared to be sleeping in his car ready to drive through the gate. At 9am sharp the gates open and people start running to the ticket line. Yes actually running. I wasn't quite sure what to do, do I run? is that really necessary? I decided briskly walking would suffice. I wait about 3 minutes to get a ticket (no running was not necessary) and still manage to be the 195th person through the turnstile. Well I do understand why it's popular, the temples and chambers we're astonishing.

My next mission was to catch a bus to the 798 art district and what a mission it was. It took me about half an hour to purchase a ticket, even after I learnt how to say bus and ticket in Chinese. After accidentally buying a ticket to the airport and then having it refunded I eventually found out you just bought a ticket on the bus. The art district was fantastic! Small art workshops, galleries, restaurants and antique stores scatter the alleyways allowing passers-by the opportunity to pop in and have a gander. The area had a contemporary cultural feel to it not unlike Berlin or Soho (London). After a couple of hours of hours I wandered back to the buses only to hop on the exact same bus that I arrived on, which saved a lot of time and hand signalling when getting my ticket as the lady already knew where I wanted to go for my affordable China tours.

At about 1630, after my siesta, I embarked on what I was yet to realise would be the most the terrifying and unpleasant shopping experience, period. Yes I was off to the silk market. I had doubts as to whether I really wanted to go but since it was so iconic I thought I'd better check it out. I arrive at this four story building and work my up the levels. First floor, knock off brand shit- pass. Second floor, "latest fashion trends"- pass. Third floor, silk- what I had come here for, I get within 3 meters of the first of about 50 silk shops and the hassling begins "Lady, pretty lady, you want pretty silk scarf?". I tried not to make eye contact with anyone and just pretended I didn't speak English. This didn't really achieve much and before I knew it I was back on the ground floor heading outside the building. I started planning to head the less touristy tea market nearby instead when I decided I should man up (for want of a better expression) and go and look inside one of the silk shops, it's not like I HAD to buy anything, it's not like I couldn't use my assertiveness and just walk out of the shop without buying anything, right? WRONG! I walk into a shop and ask to look at their pyjamas. The lady shows me their selection of nighties and then continuous asks me which one I like. She pulls out my selection ready to make a sale. I ask her how much it costs, having absolutely no idea of a ballpark figure, "530Y". Holy crap that's like my budget for next four days. This is the point I realise I don't want to be here and begin to attempt to leave the shop. A poor attempt it was as she manages to get a figure out of me of what I would be willing to pay. I tell her 100Y with absolutely no intention of buying the god dam nighty. Then she goes crazy with the selling techniques, once she gets down to 100 she starts demanding that I give her a reason why I said I would pay 100Y and now I won't. Geez. "I don't want it, I was just looking", "why? why would you do that?", "I DON'T WANT IT ARRGGGGGHHH!" is what I should have should have said and then ran away instead I replied with the stupidest thing I could probably say to a vendor this driven, "sorry". I'm not really sure what happened but all of a sudden I was handing over 70Y to the poor sales lady just trying to make a living- idiot!

Tonight is my last night in the hostel before I meet up with the vodkatrain group at a different one, if it's as nice as this one I'll be happy! Instead of being put in an 8 bed dorm they put me in a 4 bed

More: China vacation deals and popular China tours

04:57 Publié dans Voyage | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)

Les commentaires sont fermés.