Our vacation, part 2

17 10 2009

… and we’re back. OK, so after Longmen Caves, we caught a bus back into town to the train station, then caught our taxi to the Aviation Business Hotel, which was a 4-star (apparently) hotel by the city centre. It actually was fairly nice, but Chinese hotels are different. It’s not unusual to stay at a Chinese hotel that is considerably nicer than your average American hotel, except for the odd thing that the cleaning crew overlooks. This time, it was the carpet, which was stained throughout. But as usual with Chinese hotels, we had free slippers, so we were able to overlook the dirty carpet and enjoy the strong water pressure in the shower. We were both pretty tired at this point, so we wandered around a bit, stopping at the park in the city centre. Most parks in the centre of cities in China are called Renmin Square, which loosely translates as people’s square. We were walking through the park, and it was very pleasant when, bam, water show starts. Right where we were standing. Apparently, only the locals know that they have an elaborate water show right in the center of the park on what looks like regular concrete. Luckily, we dashed out of the way of the water (one group of Chinese were also caught by the spray, which made us feel a little less lame) and enjoyed the show, which featured triumphant Communist music and colored lights. Then we went down a street and loaded up on street food and went back to the hotel. Since both of us were a little beaten up and tired by this point, we elected to go to the second floor for massages. The signs were all in Chinese, but appeared to indicated an 80-minute massage for 58 RMB (Roughly $7 and change), so we took two, and they guided us to a personal room with a giant-screen TV. I watched some football, they brought some hot water in for us to drink, and we each had a masseuse, in my case a girl and in Missy’s a guy. They did our feet extensively, our legs, back, neck, etc and were very proper. It was a good massage. Afterward we received some complimentary Chinese socks, which are very thin, and retired to our room for bed. The next day? The Shaolin Temple!
-Jeremiah

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