On our recent trip to China we visited three cities, each completely different than the next. Alex captured our trip with his Leica, old school black-and-white film style.
The next stop was Xi’An. Less cosmopolitan than Beijing, Xi’An is a place where the air is heavy and you can really see the disparity between the rich and poor. If you look down from atop the majestic city walls, you can see people living among trash heaps in crumbling structures. But, Xi’An has an ancient-city charm and after seeing the Terracotta Warriors, nothing is better than resting your bones at a tea house. There’s a tea for losing weight, a tea for smokers, a tea to help with your body’s reaction to pollution, a tea for warm liver. As Alex says, “if there’s something that ails you, there’s a tea for that.”
Shanghai is a modern city. The entire city is one big marketplace, you can’t walk 10 ft without someone trying to sell you something. Shanghai is very much like any western metropolis, right down to the Starbucks. It’s big city living and big city prices, but if you use your bartering skills (as I was told to do, even though it made me a little uncomfortable) bargains abound. We also got to ride the world’s fastest train.
China was amazing, we’ll be back just as soon as we save enough money for another set of plane tickets.