I’d love to think that I’m a worldly traveler. I know, embrace the culture, celebrate the diversity, see the sights. I can’t help but know that my fellow blogger, Scott, would have a whole different perspective on my trip, but hey, he thinks an overnight camping trip pegs his adventure meter. So maybe I’m not doing so bad. I am a small town girl at heart.
Recently, I left the comfort of the New River Gorge for a journey to China, the largest U.S. trading partner, a net importer of food, a country of interest for all.
With 1.3-plus billion people, there are certainly lots of opportunity. What is my problem? Well, I created a list of objections I encountered on my latest trip:
Human beings simply should not be stuffed in a capacity-filled airplane for 12+ hours. Did I mention that travel guidelines require economy class?
Sushi. Haven’t acquired the taste for this one; it is a staple, sort of like grits for breakfast.
The exchange rate is crazy, 1500 Yuan is $219.57 U.S. dollars – BYOC (Bring Your Own Calculator).
Lines & traffic. L.A. is claustrophobic for me, Shanghai unbearable.
World Expo, aka World’s Fair, is taking place from May through October – a great event that I would have loved to attend. That was until I figured out you needed to wait in line three-four hours for popular pavilions after making a reservation to wait in line. Highly illogical.
Did I mention the latest craze sold everywhere? Yes, this Gumby-like creature can be found logo’ed, framed, stuffed, bannered and topiaried throughout the country.
Despite my travel agent’s assurance, three hours to clear customs in Chicago to a connecting flight probably isn’t going to happen, so add another 36 hours to your trip.
On a positive note, the people are extremely accommodating and our hosts, Robin and his staff, bent over backwards to provide outstanding customer service for those they work with from the States. Hopefully, they will be able to visit the States in the future and whitewater rafting at ACE Adventure Resort is high on their list of things to do. Maybe they’ll fit in a canopy tour too.
Excursions like this make me so happy to land at the small airport in Charleston, W.Va. From there, I have one hour and fifteen minutes to drive through the mountains and appreciate the place and river I get to call home. So, with the trip over, here is my last travel tip.
When traveling to China, remember the mid-flight snack is noodles. Not a bad snack unless of course chopsticks are the only eating utensil. What was I thinking wearing a white shirt?