The following morning, Liubov and I went to Yang’s Dumplings. They had xialongbao, aka soup dumplings. Xialongbao are not normally fried on the bottom, but they were here. Maybe some would argue that this additional process disqualifies it as the real deal, but nonetheless, one cannot deny the awesomeness that is Yang’s Dumplings.
I had both the pork dumplings and shrimp dumplings…and both were so good! I’m used to having soy sauce with dumplings, but they used a dark vinegar for dipping. Got some freshly squeezed pomegranate juice afterwards and it was amazing. I expected an overpowering tart, but it was surprisingly sweet with the tart being the secondary taste. And all the woman did was directly squeeze two pomegranates into a cup. I’m not sure if I’ll ever have pomegranate juice that good again.
We then got a full body massage. Liubov knew a good place for a bargain price. After standing and walking for about nine hours straight on the previous day (which was a big confidence booster for my ability to walk around), it was just what I needed. Since I still did not have full range of motion in my bad knee, I was afraid my masseuse may be too rough on it. Thankfully, the massage was rejuvenating and not painful at all.
I then walked through the French Quarter. The streets were completely lined with maple trees as far as the eye can see. Before I headed into Xintiandi, I stopped at a park across it just to relax and people watch. There were elderly people chit chatting in groups, couples relaxing under trees, and kids running around the fields. It was a great sight to see.
Xintiandi was also very cool. Though recently built, it looked like an old town heavily influenced by western architecture. Much of the the pathways and structures were built by bricks. There were a lot of small shops that had interesting knick knacks. A nice escape from the Chinese bustle.
I then joined Liubov to go back to Pudong and go to the bar at the bottle opener building. Many of the buildings in Pudong were connected by a network of elevated walkways. Kind of how Vegas has it just to connect sidewalks on busy streets, but on a larger scale. The elevator had the following floors available: 1, 87, 91. After the ear-popping rise to the 91st floor, we had an incredible view of all of Pudong and everything beyond the river. We then rushed to the Bund only to miss the lighting of the Pearl Tower by a couple of minutes…again. Still, we went all the way, so we decided to take pictures nonetheless.
Every night I was getting terrorized by a single mosquito who could not get enough of my blood. 5am this night, while the mosquito was relentlessly attacking my face, I had an ingenious idea. Wrap my face with the bandana and hold it in place with my hood. It ended up looking like a fencing helmet. And I’m happy to say…it worked!