Hello everyone, I'm finally back and look at all that's happened while I've been away. The wisteria is all done, the Joseph's Coat roses are in full bloom and the pittosporum is now perfuming the garden. A Phoebe is building a nest on our front porch and making quite a mess with the mud. I love Spring and almost felt I'd missed it, because the day I returned it was 91 degrees (32 celsius), but now it's back to normal.
I had a wonderful holiday, but it's good to be back to normal food, normal toilets, normal traffic, clean air, and set prices. In the last three days since we've been back NO ONE has grabbed my arm and tried to sell me a fake Rolex, T-shirt, purse, or silk tie. "Hallo pretty lady, I make you good deal." Whew!
As you may have guessed, we went to China. And what a fascinating trip it was. Our first stop was Beijing where we visited the Great Wall, the Hutongs, Tianenman Square, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, and the Panda bears.
Then we flew to Xi'an and saw the Terracotta Warriors, the Shaanxi History Museum, a 7th century Mosque, and the Wild Goose Pagoda. Next we flew to Guilin and took a Li River Cruise, had a group foot massage (hilarious), visited the Dragon Spine Rice Terraces and the village of Ping An, saw Elephant Trunk Hill, and watched cormorant fishing.
Then we flew to Suzhou and visited the nearby village of Tongli where we took a gondola ride and toured the folklore museum. In Suzhou we also visited the Master of Fishing Nets Garden, and learned how silk is created from cocoon to fabric.
Our last three days were spent in Shanghai where we toured the Bund, went to the 88th floor of the Jin Mai Tower, visited the Shanghai Museum, and saw an acrobat show. Our last day there was spent walking and touring the Yu Garden and Bazaar, and window shopping on Nanjing Road. Our final thrill was to ride the Maglev to the airport.
Over the next few days I'll post some photos from the trip, but for now I just want to breathe the fresh air and enjoy my comfy little home and garden.