Saturday, March 11
We flew with China Eastern, a you-get-what-you-pay-for airline, which meant a 14-hour layover in Shanghai. This was fine, as I had never been to China before; hitting two birds with one stone, A+. You always hear how shite the air quality is in China, but you don't really understand until you get there. I am fairly certain this is how my pneumonia progressed, but that deserves a blog post of its own.
We stayed at the Grand Hyatt in the Jin Mao Tower, which was incredibly exciting, mainly because I had seen a photograph of its impressive atrium at the SFMOMA. I mean, just look at it.
For the rest of the evening, Sam's friend guided us through the old and new financial districts of Shanghai. I wish I could tell you exactly where we were, but I don't remember. My b; I will consult Sam on this. It evoked Times Square, with all its pretty lights and hefty tourism, but with thrice the overwhelming stench of smoke. I swear, everyone smokes in Shanghai.
Unfortunately, by 10:00 pm I was too exhausted to explore Shanghai further. We returned to the hotel, and left at the wee hours of the next morning to catch our next flight to Tokyo.