I think Melissa and I did all the touristy things we could have in just one weekend. We visited Yuyuan Garden, went to the top of the Pearl Tower, walked along the Bund, visited the aquarium, walked around the French Concession, wandered around People's Square, and hung out in People's Park.
We had a lot of fun doing those things. Some of them are pictured above.
But I think the real highlights are in a lot of things that weren't photographed (although some definitely were and are also pictured above):
Making it onto our train with just 3 minutes to spare.
Oohing and ahhing over the map our hotel gave us.
Laughing at the absurdity that was trying to get extra towels from housekeeping.
Laughing harder at the ridiculousness of the Sightseeing Tunnel.
Eating Thai food twice because yum.
Surviving the insane crowds. (And this is my second year in China! Insane.)
Eating watermelon in People's Park, tired and sweaty after a full day of walking around.
Getting excited over a book in Tiffany's, instead of the jewelry. (They have all of the Sex and the City things! — Melissa's a big SATC fan.)
At a couple points, feeling like I could have been walking around in a city back home, minus the signs all in Chinese, of course.
Breakfast at Kabb.
Figuring out the metro.
Melissa being a master navigator and laughing at how touristy we definitely looked.
Laughing. All of the laughing.
Real talks, too. About being a grown up, friendships, etc.
Yelling, Wo yao zhen zhu nai cha! (I want bubble tea!) in the middle of a crowded street and having a lady stop and tell us how happy we seem and then tell us where to find bubble tea. (She understood me! And she thinks we're happy!)
Meeting up with friends from university. I can't explain how nice it is to be able to talk to someone else from home who is also living in China.
Having drinks at a speakeasy.
Sharing a moment with "Victor," the
Singing John Mellencamp and Shania Twain and playing air guitar while waiting in line at the Pearl Tower.
Shouting at security guards, You f*ckers! because they wouldn't help a lost boy. Long story.
Growling at a woman who shoved me into traffic. Really.
Fish and chips and a burger and beer and apple cider at Shanghai Brewery.
P.S. Highlights from Boracay, Vermont, and Montréal.