Maria Holland

Ode To A Little Container of Garlic Sauce

In Uncategorized on July 8, 2010 at 9:23 pm

We woke up and were on the road by 10, catching a bus to Hangzhou.  I think I picked the wrong bus station in Hangzhou, because we had a half-hour taxi ride upon our arrival.  But at least there was no problem with the hotel this time . . .

We had lunch at a Sichuan place that looked nice – but unfortunately, wasn’t.  I forgot that the only thing you can tell from how a Chinese restaurant looks is how expensive it will be; the quality of the food and service are totally unrelated.  The servers got our order wrong, ignored my repeated requests for tea and rice, and tried to charge us for things we didn’t order. 

It was rainy, but the main (only?) thing you go to Hangzhou to see is West Lake so we headed there anyway.  I could tell the lake was pretty, but on a day like this it really didn’t have much on Xiamen.  Except pagodas, I guess; those were a nice touch.

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We walked across the lake on the Su Causeway, which was a stretch of land so wide that it was possible to forget we were walking across a lake.  It’s a pretty big lake, and it was a long walk. 

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The tree cover overhead is thick and weeping willows kind of block the view of the water, so the main sight was the colorful umbrellas of our fellow walkers.

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Once we reached the other side of the lake, we found a bus stop to take us back to our hotel.  Matt noticed that one of the guys waiting with us was wearing an XMU baseball cap, so I started up a conversation with him.  I’m pretty sure the last thing he expected to see in Hangzhou was a foreign woman claiming to be classmates, but that’s why life in China is so exciting.  The bus took like an hour to come, so we had lots of time to chat; he just graduated in Biology and was headed to graduate school.  We commiserated about Xiamen’s weather and discussed sites to see in Hangzhou.  We’re pretty much besties.

We got lost on the way home.  I am not sure why we had so much difficulty navigating main streets on this trip! 

Back at the hotel, tired and wet, we decided to order in for dinner.  A quick internet search, a simple phone call, and 40 minutes later, Papa John’s was at the door!  Please don’t judge me for eating from American pizza chains twice in as many days; I had a moment of weakness and Matt only encouraged it.

With that said, the pizza was amazing.  It tasted exactly like home (as much as I can remember from a year ago) and even came with the little container of garlic sauce.  Oh, little container of garlic sauce – I will be home soon!

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