I usually try not to travel for Thanksgiving because the travel situation is always RIDICULOUS. But I figured, how bad could it really be? I budgeted way more time than I needed to get to the airport. I left work early and even took the train, multiple transfers and all (MTA subway to NJ Transit to AirTrain), to avoid getting stick in traffic. And for the most part it worked!
I got to the airport two hours before my scheduled flight! Security was slow but I still had plenty of time! I bought a Snapple! I responded to some last work emails! I was ready and waiting!
At this point I’ve been waiting at the airport for three hours and my flight keeps getting pushed back. Oh, and there’s a pigeon chilling out on the sign for my gate.
On Saturday, I went with some classmates and some locals (a classmate’s friend and his friends) to the city of Taicang. Taicang is located about an hour away from Shanghai, but it was so quiet in comparison to Shanghai, with blue skies and lots of space. Spent about the entire day in the town. We went to the park and museum, which were largely centered around Zheng He, a famous Chinese explorer and diplomat. Then there was a place called Shaxi Town, which is part of the old town that had been preserved.
One of the locals said that most of the buildings around Taicang (which looked like any normal city) were probably five years old, ten at the most. Crazy to think about how much a town can change in such a short period of time. We walked around the city center a bit and we probably could have been anywhere. They had a KFC … ugh, that chain is everywhere.
Anyway, had a great time. They treated us to lunch and dinner, both of which were AMAZING. Lots of seafood (for lunch we had three different kinds of shrimp) since Taicang is located on the Yangtze River and is a natural port. Oh and we also ate roasted pigeon … yum. It was like roasted duck, but smaller. In Chinese it’s pronounced ge1 zi. We had a ball of a time saying it. Much fun. Not exactly a tourist city, but nice for a low-key getaway from Shanghai.