79 Photos - Feb 7, 2012
Photo: Photo: Photo: Photo: Photo: Photo: The gardens at the Summer PalacePhoto: Photo: Blue, green, and gold tile work everywhere in the Forbidden CityPhoto: For an idea of scale, look at the people in the top right...Photo: Photo: I didn't see that guy there...Photo: Photo: Photo: I'm glad we took the steeper, left path. I think that side heads into the next province.Photo: Yeah, we're not climbing all the way up there.Photo: Graffiti on the 'No Graffiti!' sign, and on all the bricks nearbyPhoto: People who didn't read the sign about no graffiti...Photo: Beijing Olympic site lamp postPhoto: Xi'an was a bit hazyPhoto: The tiny pit of clay soldiersPhoto: Little garden pond hidden away at the Terracotta Warrior sitePhoto: Plenty of Obamao merchandisePhoto: Bell Tower or Drum Tower - I'm not sure which. Xi'an, near the Starbucks.Photo: Photo: People bitch about the price of Starbucks in Canada.Photo: Hong Kong Airport - this thing is a million kilometers longPhoto: MUST PROTECT THE RAILINGSPhoto: Chinese HobbitsesPhoto: Monument to the People's Heroes, Tiananmen Square, BeijingPhoto: Travel Duck takes a break under the watchful gaze of Chairman MaoPhoto: Heading into the Forbidden City through the Gate of Heavenly PeacePhoto: Boy LionPhoto: Girl LionPhoto: Not as forbidden as I'd imagined.Photo: Meeting a friend from Vancouver "Under the Mao"Photo: Only one trip on the Beijing subway while we were therePhoto: Engrish made this tissue sound much more interesting than it wasPhoto: Xi'an AirportPhoto: Travel duck makes friends with the hotel lamp in Xi'anPhoto: Landmark, landmark, landmark... McDonald's.Photo: The hotel in Xi'an had a pre-industrial transformer that we used to recharge the laptop.Photo: Coca-Cola / Terracotta umbrellas (and the back of our awesome guide, No-No, in black)Photo: On the way from Beijing, I got an email from a friend from Vancouver. He was responding to an email I had sent that said "Hey, I'm off to Asia in the morning, can you check on this server while I'm gone?" 

His email said "I'm in Asia too - I'm in Xi'an for a couple more days."

We were flying to Xi'an in 12 hours. 

So, we went for dumplings.Photo: So many dumplings. There were rabbit-shaped ones with rabbit in, and duck shaped ones with duck...Photo: Xi'an airport on our way to ShanghaiPhoto: Photo: Travel Duck, Nico, and Pomegranate HeadPhoto: So getting a t-shirt of that.Photo: Don't knock it. McDonalds was way better in Shanghai than it is in North America. We walked into a KFC, which are ubiquitous there... shook our heads in confusion, and walked back out.Photo: I actually like the way the English version reads on this (Starbucks?) condiment standPhoto: Lunch at a fancy hotel in Shanghai - cool glass bubble fountainPhoto: A great grate from somewhere...Photo: Photo: Best part of the pearl market tourist trap was this little guy. Guilty-looking raccoon / panda / pig creaturePhoto: Another tourist friendly gig included in the package, but it was a lot more interesting than I'd have thought.Photo: That way lies the financial district of Shanghai.Photo: Oddly, Walmart's prices are about the same there as they are here. I think they're getting screwed.Photo: Condoms. Make your own joke.Photo: Had some decent clothes made here at the Fabric Market in ShanghaiPhoto: Mustard for Mild AmericansPhoto: Apple in ShanghaiPhoto: Shanghai Marriott hotel lobbyPhoto: Photo: The Phallic Oriental Pearl Tower with a rainbow collection of flags.Photo: It's like Vancouver's Expo site in 1988.Photo: Tickets for the elevator up to the top of the tall tower, and for the trippy (if over promised) Bund Sightseeing TunnelPhoto: This is the outside of the Shanghai World Financial Center. Nearly a half kilometer straight up. That's where we're going next...Photo: From the top of the Shanghai World Financial Center, the Jin Mao next door, and the Oriental Pearl Tower are pale imitations.Photo: As close to straight down as I can shoot.Photo: Photo: Photo: The top observation deck of the SWFC is as interesting as the view outside, I think.Photo: LOOK OUT! HEAR COMES THE PINCHING HAND!Photo: 7-11 in the subway station in ShanghaiPhoto: They were neither intense nor stimulating. Tasty, but they over-sold it.Photo: At the Fabric Market, we were waiting for them to find the tailor who made my pants... so... we went outside and ate street food.

There are no words to express how amazing it was.Photo: Photo: About to travel through time on the way homePhoto: Confiscated in Hong Kong, because you get off a plane, go through security, and get back on your plane. LAME.