Spring in Hangzhou

Just returned from Hangzhou for a quick weekend trip. We stayed at the brand new Courtyard in Wulin, everything was great other than we found out the traffic was horrific there. I never remember having any trouble getting a cab but it was so difficult this time, thankfully the hotel got the cabs for us most of them, even then we had to wait 45 minutes at 2pm on Sunday. We took a boat and walked on Su Di (苏堤), watched the show on West Lake “Impression: West Lake”, and really enjoyed the visit to the former residence of Hu Xueyan. We also spent half a day at Hefang Street, it was very crowded as well but we liked the snacks and dinner there.

The train going to Hangzhou wasn’t that great, our first class seat was an area for six people divided out in the second class compartment. For the first time, we overfed Li before we left the house, at 12 I fed them milk, at 1pm, they each had a toothiepeg while we were eating lunch, at 1:30pm, we gave them veggie juice mixed with cereal, at 2pm, I fed them again, this time Lin bit my nipple and Li didn’t refuse the milk. So we were all happy when we got to the train station, then Li vomited while we were at McDonald’s getting the taro pie. Everything poured out of his mouth and the vomit was on the floor, on my pants on his clothes. So we had to hurry up and wiped him clean and got on the train, I sat him on my lap, and that’s when he threw up the second time, I am glad that I had my scarf because I used it to catch most of the liquid. I have never thought that a baby could throw up so much, stuff just poured out of his mouth once again. It was indeed amazing. Fortunately my aunt traveled with us this time and she’s a life saver.

Michael and I talked about how out-of-date and poorly the modern cities are designed, the traffic congestion was caused by sales of automobiles. Hangzhou downtown is very small, there are plenty of cabs but in recent years, people have been buying cars like crazy so today it doesn’t matter what means of transportation you take, you are stuck on the road. It took us 45 minutes to travel from the hotel to the train station and another 45 minutes to get to Shanghai by the newest high speed train. We love the train going back, it is fast, clean and equipped with real nice change station for babies. Jacque Fresco has pointed out this long time ago that it is very difficult to fix this kind of problem it would be much better to design cities from ground up. http://www.thevenusproject.com has all his designs, I don’t know why no one has adopted his design, it’s simple and makes so much sense.

Shanghai, with a lot more people and a lot more vehicles, restricted the number of vehicles from the very beginning and took other measures to ensure better flow during rush hours. I really don’t understand why so many want to have a vehicle in a city since it’s so much trouble maintaining the vehicles. We met a family at Courtyard who drove to Hangzhou, she said she got stuck in traffic for an hour three traffic lights away from the hotel, and circled West Lake twice looking for a parking space. Well I guess we did okay.

Nevertheless, Hangzhou is so beautiful, it will just be even better if there weren’t that many tourists and cars.

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