What did you think of your hometown when you were a child? Did you think it was just large, or maybe about mid-size? Some visits might re-calibrate your scale. Shanghai was such.
So far I had two jumps to Shanghai, the World’s largest city (by population, 24 M+).
Facts and figures are just one thing but when you experience it all yourself – that is amazing. One aspect that kept me thinking, how people can manage all that?
Not only logistically, but the information overhead of the city must be really-really huge. Cameras are all over the place, and with that density, that must require a truly enormous capacity.
Even in the elevators, you are constantly being informed of … I don’t know what. The most important thing, however – what not to touch – is 100% clear.
Elevators are highly welcome, especially when you aim at the 46th floor.
The below building was my absolute favorite – one of the ugliest I have ever seen. Yet, it is the inside that matters more, and this one has quite good restaurants.
Coming to the major topic of food and restaurants: I have always been told that Hungarian “gulyás leves” (translates as goulash soup to English) is something world famous. And it really is. You can get it even in China. Though it must be considered as something complex, with respect to the number of characters describing it.
One other restaurant that also came to be my frequent choice is the local Hooters. The service is absolutely awesome, tolerating all the sense of humor we took in there.
With Chinese food specifically, I had some ventures before. So, just to avoid any unwanted outcome, I went for steamed vegetables and the below little “bag” with meat inside. This you can eat basically two ways. One is that I would call the “single pass” way, but that will boil your tongue. The other is essentially biting a hole on the bag first, releasing the extremely hot fat, and then processing it further. The latter requires a better chopstick handling technique.
I was actually expected to screw it up with the sticks especially when locals recognized that the way I hold the sticks is yet absolutely unknown. However, it is extremely effective. So much so, that I was asked to teach how I manage, after I demonstrated how to hold one single grain of rice that way.
I had one evening to check out the city center. This area is named the Bund, and it actually looks awesome at night.
For such an intensive journey – and the surrounding flights, you need to have a very solid know-how of sleeping in an economy seat.