After our siesta, we headed back to Yu Gardens for dinner at Nanxiang Steamed Bun Restaurant. I saw the restaurant featured in a TV show I watch called 'No Reservations,' so I dragged Jaymi, Daryn, & Benny along for the dinner.
Before dinner, we did a little shopping. More gifts for people, and an erhu for me! Wheee!
Yu Gardens at night is beautiful:
Dinner at Nanxiang was a bit of a challenge. To begin with, the restaurant does NOT cater to non-Chinese. No English menu, no picture menu, and the staff speaks very little else besides English. Fortunately, the menu is very limited. Two kinds of dumplings, beer, and soda. We ordered the smaller of the two dumplings. The dumplings at Nanxiang are called 'soup dumplings.' The filling is pork, spices, and gelatin. When the dumplings are steamed, the gelatin turns to liquid, creating a nice soup inside the dumpling. You have to be careful when you bite into the dumpling lest you spill your soup! Having seen Anthony Bourdain eat this on his show, I knew how it was done, but we all had to muddle through a few dumplings before we got the hang of it. Still, these were definitely the best dumplings I've ever had!
After dinner, we wandered over to the Bund. The Bund is the nickname for the old section of Shanghai that sits right on the river. It's full of old buildings like this one:
Unfortunately, the Bund is under major renovation in preparation for the world expo in 2010, so the promenade was shut down, as was the bar we were looking for. Instead, we headed under the river to Pu Dong, the newest section of Shanghai, and one that is quickly becoming the center of high finance in China. To get to Pu Dong, we took a kooky underground tram that had a sound and light show to accompany it! It was definitely the weirdest thing we did tonight:
After going to Pu Dong and back and finding that the Bund was not going to satisfy us, we returned to the hotel for a relatively early evening. It's now 11am in Virginia, 8am in California. You're getting up. I'm going to bed. Goodnight!