Monday, May 30, 2011

Qibao: A Field Trip on Our Own (5/29/2011)

Sunday, May 29, 2011
In my research, I discovered another "water town," or as they more accurately call this one, an "ancient street." We had visited one of these water towns, Xinchang, with the Grand Gateway group just last week. But since it was nice and sunny today, we decided to go ahead to Qibao Ancient Street, centered on a canalized river.
A major plus, we could get to this one by Metro! Take Metro Line 9 to Qibao Station, use exit 2, turn right on Caobao Lu, right at the first corner on Minzhu Lu, and a couple blocks down you will see a ticket booth. If you are interested in seeing the six museums, buy a ticket. Otherwise continue to the t-intersection and turn left on Qingnian Lu. Soon you will see the decorative gate on the right denoting the entrance to the old street. Bear right past the rockery waterfall.
So, it was a bit touristy, but it was fun!
In the main town - "imperial" pay phones:
Pailou or decorative gate at the entrance to the ancient street:
The bell tower, mistakenly identified as the clock tower:
Kent with a guardian lion:
Crickets for sale:
A cricket in a bamboo cage:
Hamsters and chipmunks for sale, too:
Taihu Rockery:

Pavilion on the rockery and a zigzag bridge:
We took our turn as posers:
Rockery grotto and waterfall:
1. Qibao Cotton Textile Mill Museum:
Shiny pebble pavement:
Stone relief of the old town:
Not sure of the significance of the Wedding Hall as part of the cotton museum, with the wedding palanquin:
Wedding Hall:
Wedding Chamber with posers:
History of the processing of cotton with posers:
Oh, they are made of wax!
Reeling and winding:
On the loom:
He's making the bolt of cotton soft and shiny.
2. Qibao Shadow Puppet Museum:
The first puppets were made from sheep skin.
Later paper and cardboard.
3. Qibao Memorial Hall of Artist Zhang Chongren:
He was a sculptor, painter, writer, and a good friend of the author, Herge, of the Tintin books and thus a model for a character in the books, "Tchang."
Carved wooden doors:
Museum exterior:
Tour boats:
Canal scene:
Puhui River Bridge:
4. Qibao Zhou's Miniature Museum (or Museum of Miniatures!):
All hand carved, etched, and painted.
A miniature of miniatures!
Etched miniature steles (stone tablets):
The cutest little things!
Miniature screen:
Even when magnified, it's still tiny!
5. Qibao Cricket House:
Full of dead preserved crickets and photos of famous fighting crickets?
A cricket well (a foot in diameter)?
The fighting cricket arenas (shoe box-size) are placed on this table:
And overhead is a lamp and a pull-down microphone just like at a boxing ring!
It was quiet in the museum, but suddenly we heard crickets chirping! Turned out to be the mobile phone ringtone of one of the staff!
Some decorative wall designs:
Smelly (stinky!) tofu vendor:
Nanda Street:
A tasty snack:
A huge piece of dough rumpled up, with garlic, onion, and sesame seeds:
Sliced into long curly pieces:
Sweet stuffed lotus root:
Pig's feet and knuckles:
6. Qibao Old Trades House:
Cotton Fluffer:
For quilts; note the tool is attached to the back of the man's waist.
Bamboo Craftsman:
Popcorn Popper:
Brass and Tin Smith:
Coffin Maker:
Farmer's chicken coop:
I thought is was a real rooster with felt eyes and comb attached, but the beak was fake. Used real feathers, though!
Newer part of town:
It's a plane!
We are not that far from Shanghai's Hongqiao Airport.
Teahouse on the canal:
Nanda Street again:
Pavilion on the canal:
Tour boat with cotton fabric top:
View towards Kangle Bridge:
View towards Anping Bridge:
Wooden bathtubs:
Qibao Temple:
Laughing Buddha:
Another laughing Buddha, with kneeler and donation box:
Gorgeous origami-like paper flowers:
Funeral music:
(We were standing behind the altar, so to speak.)
Funeral offerings of a nice home and car for the departed:
A lift bridge?
Bell Tower:
This bell arrived in town on its own after a flood.
View onto the rockery:

Monday, July 4, 2011
Brynne and I went to Qibao to purchase souvenirs at the textile mill shop.
Brynne in Qibao:
View toward Anping Bridge:
View toward Kangle Bridge:
Nanda Street, busy even on a weekday:
Pigeons and ??:
We found the distillery!
Visited Zhou's Miniature Museum:
Miniature carpet:
Minature bonsai:
Tour boat:
Pet vendor:

Monday, May 30, 2011
In Shanghai, south of the Bund, is the oldest and best preserved Catholic church:
1853, Spanish Baroque style, formerly St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, now Dongjiadu Catholic Church.
Ja, ve make de best vax for de carz!
Yacht dealer offices:
Nanpu Bridge (half of it):
The 4th largest cable-stayed bridge in Shanghai and 58th in the world (Dames Point is 77th):
The second tower:
The spiral ramp is considered to be a wonder in world bridge construction:
Beneath the bridge:
Before opening for the day, most businesses have a ceremony of some type:
The first Presbyterian church in Shanghai:
Established in 1860, now the Pure Heart Church.
Note the rooftops of the nearby apartment buildings. Do they help shade the building?