On Saturday morning we awoke to some plumbing problems as the toilet was draining very slowly but we knew that it was the start of a three day weekend so nothing could be done about it.
We set out about 10:00 and headed to the Green Lake area. This was where our hotels had been located on the previous two trips and we knew that it was a beautiful and relaxing area.
First we stopped by Aling’s shop to say hello and I saw a wonderful art piece that she had made. As we walked to Salvador’s (where her husband works) we basically decided to purchase it. We spoke with Collin and asked about having it shipped to us. He said that Aling is doing a show in Denver in July and, if we didn’t mind waiting a month, he would ship it over with the others for the show and then UPS it to us from Denver. We are very excited about the purchase and hopefully I will have a photo to show soon.
After a cup of espresso (for Michael) and a bowl of ice cream (for me), we walked over to Green Lake. As we stepped across the street, Michael looked up and said “look at the street lights…..were those there last year?”…… …..each one had three ducks/geese on them. They were cool!!
We crossed the street to the lake side and were immediately met buy a man trying to sell us something. We did our usual wave-off and then I realized that he was asking if Michael wanted his shoes shined. We had talked just that morning about the fact that we should have brought shoe polish with us. So, we turned around to catch up with him. A woman overhead (and understood) our conversation and ran ahead to tell the man that we did indeed want a shoe shine!!
Michael sat down at a bench and the process began. He first put guards around his socks to protect them and then tucked in the shoe laces. Next, he used a cream soap and a soft toothbrush to clean the shoes. Then came polish put on with a brush, and rubbed in with his hands. Next was another bottle of dye to color the heels and edges of the shoes. Then it was buff, buff buff!!! He took out a small brush and proceeded to “paint” the stitching lines. Next he put more polish on, this time just using his hands to rub it in. Finally, there was the final buff and voila…..Michael had shoes that looked like new!!!!
The gentleman was very intent as he worked and obviously wanted to do a good job. When it came time to pay, I held out a flashcard that had the numbers 1 thru 10 and then 100 and 1,000 on it. He pointed to the five and to the ten (2 times) indicating that the cost was 25Y…. $US3.67.
We continued walking around the lake and came to an area that had intrigued me last year. There are tons of little booths set up with sheets and sheets of papers hanging from ropes. Everybody is standing around excitedly reading the papers and talking to one another. We REALLY need to figure out what is going on!!!
The park was filled with kids, parents and grandparents. One set of twin girls came toward us and were looking intently at us and smiling. Michael smiled back and said “Hello” and he was rewarded with “twin hello’s”. This was a highlight of our day!!!
It was interesting to watch the reactions of people seeing us here. One grandmother obviously wanted us to interact with her granddaughter and we had a fun few minutes pointing to things and watching her walk around the bench where we were sitting.
We found a beautiful spot to sit and look out at the lotus pond with bordering willow trees.
We were wondering why this area was open since people were everywhere else. We realized that we were sitting in the sun and that is something that Chinese people simply do NOT do. They believe that a lighter colored skin is preferred and they go to great lengths to stay covered. We saw numerous people riding motor scooters with the man in the front and the woman in the rear holding an umbrella over their heads. The funniest one that I saw was a grandmother chasing after her grandson with an umbrella trying to keep him covered!!!!
We came to one area where there was a performance going on. This is what we saw…..
As we were strolling around the lake we came across a group of University aged kids having a picnic. One of them ran up to us and asked if she could have her picture taken with us. We of course laughed and said yes. Then, another 2 ran up, then one guy, then two or three more and finally one single girl. When this girl stood between us, one of the others gestured and started laughing at the difference in our heights!! We walked away with a smile on our faces. After walking a few yards, I went back and asked if I could take a photo of them. They formed a Semi-circle and laughingly posed for us……
There were kids riding in cute little boats…..
A good day was had by all…….