Day one/two – We left for China on Monday morning and day one really became day one and two because you lose a day, which is never fun to do at the beginning of a trip. Everyone says that you get it back when you return, but who wants an extra day at work? I want that day to explore.
We have made this flight before, and the best way I can describe it is to relate it to childbirth. Now mothers, hear me out… There is only one aspect of it that I wish to relate and that is how when you are going through it a second or third time you never remember how bad it was until it is too late and you are in the middle of it. As I sat on this 14-hour flight I thought, “why am I doing this again?” Then I remember the incredible memories of our last trip and realize that in the end it will be all worth it.
We landed Tuesday evening in Shanghai, met by our tour guide and taken to our long awaited room to unwind and get some welcomed sleep. 4:30am Wednesday morning came far too early but now the adventure begins as we boarded our flight for Guilin. This is a part of China we haven’t experienced and are excited to see the beautiful gumdrop mountains and cruise down the Li River. I hope to befriend one of the local fishermen and have him teach me how they use the local birds to help them catch the day’s meal.
We didn't rent a car while in NYC. Why would you? The cost for parking would probably exceed the cost of having the car and who wants to drive in the city anyway? We did however decide to take a side trip to New Hampshire and stay a night with some friends and visit with our publisher of, day trips from salt lake city, Available now at Barns & Noble for pre-orders.
We had taken a shuttle from the airport to our hotel when we landed, which wasn't the fastest way as we landed at about the same time the evening rush began. The cost after tip was about $40.00 for both of us and we figured it wasn't too bad. We did hear however that once you take the subway and airport train, you'll never use anything else.
Well our story begins with us believing this is true. Now don't get me wrong, I love the ease of the Subway in New York, but when your not as familiar as you need to be and it is crowded and you have your luggage, I'm just not sure if the savings are worth the cost. Here is the cost... The station was right across the street from our hotel, big bonus. However we soon learned there are two blue trains that go towards the airport. One has a stop for the Airtrain and one forks off and heads in a different direction. We, of course, were on the fork train. We realized this and decided to get off at a mutual stop and catch the correct one to the Airtrain. The trained stopped, We got up and headed out the door, Michelle had a little delay from her luggage and when I got outside, turned around and I saw the doors shutting with Michelle still on the train. She thought she could stop the doors and stuck he foot between them and as the train proceeded to take off I watched Michelle lose her balance and fall back into the train. So I grabbed my cell phone... no service. I then proceeded to the person at the ticket booth, no help at all. I proceeded up out of the subway to get cell reception with the hope that she would get off at the next stop and do the same. After only a few minutes we connected on the phone. She stayed at that stop next to a very helpful policeman and I got on the next train heading in her direction. It so happened to be the one we also needed for the Airtain.
We met back up, got off at the Airtrain and made it to the car rental place no worse for the adventure. Total cost for both of us to take the train, $4.00 for the subway and $10.00 for the Airtrain, a $25.00 savings but we're not sure it was worth the gray hairs. When we returned for our last night in the city we took a taxi and then a hired car to head home. The shuttle, taxi and hired car are all about the same cost and I haven't decided which I thought was better.