Sunday, May 1, 2011
Today is the official International Workers Day or Labour Day (except in the U.S. where we don't labour, I guess!). For us Cold War veterans, May 1st was always the day when the Soviet Union and China celebrated their military might by parading all their armament down the main streets of their major cities. So although the inspiration for International Workers Day came from an event in the U.S. (Haymarket Square Massacre in Chicago), we (and Canada) have chosen to celebrate Labor Day on the first Monday of September.
Today we chose to go north in Shanghai. Popped out of the Metro station to see this apartment building with a rock wall:
The corner newstands all have magazine rooftops:
Note the placement of coins in the carving:
A reclining marble Buddha:
The two jade Buddhas are kept in separate upstairs rooms which require an additional entry fee. No photos allowed, so check out: http://chinatour.net/jade-buddha-temple-i-96.html. The photos do not do justice to the detail and the jewels.
One of many granite etchings:
And who is tying prayer ribbons to everything in sight?!
Monday, May 2, 2011
Since Labour Day was on a Sunday this year, Monday was a holiday. Kent had off, so we decided to do another trip that required a lot of walking. It also required a long Metro ride out towards the Songjiang District of Shanghai, 22 miles from the city center. The Metro became elevated and we rode through flat land dotted with factories, office buildings, farmland, some highrises and other homes.
We got off at the Dongjing station, rather than the Sheshan station, since we read it was closer to Sheshan, one of two hills in the area.
The land on either side of the road was landscaped into parks.
Here are peach trees:
Picnic in the park:
We saw many tents, but they seemed to be used for shade or for the kids.
No horn blowing, ha!
There are always newish looking buildings that appear abandoned:
There must have been twenty of these, all looking the same.
Are these leaves okay?
Finally, we spotted the hill through the haze, and there is a cathedral!
I believe this is an entrance to the Sheshan Forest Park:
An observation platform on a hilltop:
At each zig and zag, there are two stations:
View from the hill, too hazy:
In 1942, Pope Pius XII ordained the church a minor Basilica. During the Cultural Revolution, all iconography was destroyed including the stained glass windows, the carvings of the stations of the cross, and the statue of the Madonna & Child atop the belltower. The statue was initially replaced with a cross, but was replaced in 2000 with a copper Madonna & Child:
We weren't allowed to go down the zigzag path, but had to follow a road downhill through bamboo groves:
Passed a tea plantation:
Room full of seismographs:
What the...? Oh, you could practice/learn CPR in this room:
We wanted to get a taxi to Songjiang Town, but didn't know how to say "Town," since the taxi driver indicated we were in Songjiang (District). When we were stopped to figure out where we wanted to go, a guy in a motor scooter truck swiped the left rear of the taxi. (We were in an accident!) There was some yelling and fist shaking on the part of the "truck" driver, and then he took off! So our taxi driver got back in to look at our map, and we decided just to go to the closest Metro station. The driver didn't understand us, but he understood we could direct him there. Took the Metro home for a very late lunch.