So, I’ve got quite the backlog of blog here. (backblog?) and this is a little behind the times, but Nanjing ftw!
Where did we leave off?
I believe we had just finished with a synopsis of Day 2.
Alright then, Day 3! For the third day in Nanjing, we trekked out to the old Ming Dynasty city walls (or what’s left of them) for a bit of a walk. They were kind of like the city walls in Xi’an, with their Spring Festival decorations still up, but some of the inflatables were looking rather sad. We were also just about the only people up there. Oh, and there was also a bonsai garden hanging out at the base of the wall. I love those little trees!
Then in the afternoon we met up with Ethan, who had been an AA at TIP back in… September. But we had kept up with each other and I had sent him a text when we had originally bought our train tickets and he said that he was, in fact, not too busy to hang out with us. So Emily got to meet the famous Ethan. We tell lots of stories about him here around the TIP campfire, with his rumba dancing ways and etc. Anyways, so he said we should meet up for lunch and then hangout in the afternoon. So he took us out to a temple restaurant, as they are known for having excellent vegetarian food, and he remember that I am a vegetarian (I’m memorable!). Then we saw the temple, which was cool.
Also, apparently Nanjing is Georgia, transplanted to China. The big thing going on right when we were there is that all the cherry blossoms were going off, and while it certainly wasn’t a Cherry Blossom Festival, people were very engaged in taking photos of the blossoms. Not only were there cherry blossoms, but also saw palmettos, magnolia trees, azalea bushes and all other manner of tree and shrub that could be found back home. The temperature was also pleasantly stifling, and the wet blanket feeling of the humidity was just lovely, homey and cozy. Poor Seattle-bred Emily though.
Anyways, as we were coming out of the temple to once again mingle with the cherry blossom obsessed hordes, we spotted something across the street that made Ethan pause.
Him: “Look a TV crew!” Us: “mmhmm” Him: “Maybe we can be on TV!” Us: “blergh. We already have enough people staring at us all the time without being on TV. (and other protestations of shyness)”
By this time the camera crew had made their way to us and we were duly interviewed on our opinion of the cherry blossoms. So, we might have been on TV. If we were cool enough. If I ever find that clip though, I will surely share it with you.
Alright let see. Then we went out to a big lakeside park and just hung out. Ethan decided that, as he was hanging out with us in all of our startling Americanness, he wanted to try his hand at being an American. So we told him that he couldn’t sit with his legs crossed at the knee, and that he should appear disinterested in his surroundings. Also, that if anyone spoke Chinese to him, that he should just shake his head and appear politely amused. Then, we had a test of his skills when some random Chinese lady came along and started talking to us about something or other. Accordingly, he shook his head and appeared bemused, and threw out a hesitant ting bu dong (I don’t understand). “Oh!” she said “I thought you were a Chinese person.” Successful April fools!
So that was Day three. Epic!
Day four we decided that we would go hiking out in the Purple Mountains. Nothing super exciting about this part because we ended up being lost most of the time we were there. Lost, cold due to a change in weather, and hungry because we only brought peanut butter and crackers for a day of hiking. Supposedly there were lots of sites out in the mountains, but by the time we found a path that didn’t end in secret military installations, private property or other such dead ends, we were so tired that we didn’t feel like trying to find the botanic gardens or anything. So we just went home. And ate at Pizza Hut.
This is the day we leave for Suzhou, so I guess it can be the start of a new blog entry.