I scrolled through the first few pages of this blog to have realised my entries on my Suzhou-Shanghai trip stopped at part 1. :(
Wanted to give up blogging the China trip but felt rather wasted when there are so many great pictures of the trip (my friend Jeff even edited them for me). So here comes the long due part 2.
Just in case you’re wondering why I’m calling it “Venice of China” – it’s just a nickname given to Suzhou because, just like Venice of Italy, there are many canals running through the city.
And this particular one I went to – the Pingjiang Road, it’s much older than your great great great great grandparents. It’s 800 years old!
I read somewhere that another canal is 1,200 years old and I don’t know why Laurence didn’t mention that one.
From one end to another end of the Pinjiang Road I figure there must be over a hundred of little shops, stores, and boutiques that run parallel to and overlook the canal.
Some of the folks living on the other side of the canal washed their clothes in the canal and it proved difficult to do so in the winter period without using a pair of gloves!
Although there was sunlight and the water did not froze it just literally chilled the hell out of you by just dipping your fingers into the water!
Hoe going near the canal to take pictures. I, on the other hand, felt very tempted to kick her from behind ahhahahah!
OK, back to the other side of the canal where commercial activities took place.
There were an abundance of guest houses along the Pingjiang Road and all of them were rather unique in their own way – much like those around the historic core of Malacca.
Take note of the cafe in the picture below that looks like a ke zhan (ancient hostel) from those wuxia films.
A peep into the building revealed it wasn’t a hostel actually, but a cafe with a super homely environment. There were fishes in that big, tall glass!
Where else except China can one find flags like that hanging outside the olden shops? NICE OR NOT THE SETTING?
There were too many little shops with strong conceptual underpinnings. While shops like this to have only begun popularising in major Malaysian cities like the Klang Valley and Malacca, they are simply everywhere in tourists spots across China.
There was this chain store that provided a “slow” mailing service for customers to send postcards into the future. Along with the thousands of postcards to choose from, they also sold souvenirs.
I wanted to send one to myself too but unfortunately the service was only available in China only. -_-
Occasionally in between rows of shops, we observed a small, narrow alleyway leading to someone’s home.
Laurence and Hoe checking out random uncle’s/auntie’s home. Hahhaha sorry for assuming that the younger generation doesn’t like staying at such a place because Laurence said he would never stay there!
I told Laurence I wouldn’t mind though, and he called me siao.
Visitors can go on a boat ride and sailor would take you from one end to another, which I think should keep them occupied for quite a bit of time considering the long distance involved.
Took this photo because the rack wasn’t fixed to the wall. It was hung against the wall by using jute rope.
Chilled ourselves out at Laurence’s favourite coffee house Momicafe. Couldn’t retrieve any picture of the exterior so…
Besides the drinks, other items on sale like coffee beans, postcards, notebooks, and bookmarks really completed the homely atmosphere that Momicafe was trying to create.
I remember buying one of these notebooks sold at the coffee house but I have forgotten whom I gave it to.
Sat down to have a cup of milk tea – which tasted FANTABULOUS!!!
See the 1st floor of the Momicafe!
I think the reason why we did not choose to go to the first floor was because of the crowds.
While having our tea, a group of fashionistas cum photographers brought in their camera equipments and started taking pictures near where we sat. Apparently people were allowed to take pictures inside the cafe.
Finally get done with the second and last post on Pinjiang Road of Suzhou. I had taken too many pictures there!
I shall blog about Shanghai in the next entry.