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July 2004

High-Points


Well the route to our new apartment is a tale of changes, surprises, and sweat!

When I was hired at Wall Street English I was told I'd be working at a particular school location of which there are three currently in Shanghai.  So Yanti & I came 'down river' from Nantong 3 weeks ago and started looking.  We ended up finding a real cute 2 bedroom place within 2 blocks of the school!  We were happy and looked forward to moving in.  About two days after we returned to Nantong, we received an email and a phone call from Anna, in HR, who said that something had come up and they needed me to work in the JinMao Tower which holds the Shanghai Grand Hyatt and is the tallest building in China at over 90 stories tall.  It's located in Pudong, just across the river from Shanghai, and is about 8 Metro stops (and a change of trains) from here I was going to be working.  Plus my 2 block walk to the old location now would be a 45 minute metro trip.  Yanti & I talked about it and we decided to try and find something closer to the new location.  I searched the internet and found what we thought was a nice place.  It was only 5 metro stops away and no train transfers.  The owner emailed us some photos and it looked smaller but cute.

So we said good-bye to our Nantong hosts (we'll miss so many of them) and the school drove us to Shanghai to our new apartment.  (It was about a 3 hour drive).  The new place was on the 4th floor of an older building, but was very cute inside.  HOWEVER: there was no refrigerator; no bed in the 2nd bedroom; no view of a nice canal like in one of the photos; AND a 15 minute bus ride AND a 40 minute metro trip away from my work!  Plus there were no restaurants or shopping in the area :-(   We were disappointed!

We decided that it didn't really work for us, so began to look again for an apartment.  Luckily, Yanti & I had visited all three Indonesian restaurants on previous trips and one of the folks we met (Alvin) was incredibly helpful.  He spent the day with us looking and we found our dream apartment:

  • 3 blocks and an 18 minute walk from my office
  • 28th floor in a 5 year old building
  • views of my office; other beautiful buildings in this part (the newest) of Shanghai; the Bund; and the river
  • Very clean building with courteous staff and security
  • and about 1200 square feet; 2 bedrooms; 2 baths; large living room; kitchen that Yanti and I can BOTH work in at the same time; and two storage rooms; all nicely furnished!

So we took it!  It was a $150/mo more than the previous place, but only $50 more that the 1st place we had found.  We're all settle in now after a trip to the local mega-market!  AND ready for guests! 

My new job is really great.  There is a lot to get used to at first, but in a few weeks I know I'll be very comfortable there.  I taught two classes last week, and this week start a full schedule.  I get Saturdays and Thursday off, and Yanti & I miss each other during the day, but soon she'll be busy with a full time Chinese Language class!  We're just beginning to discover this incredible city with all the strange sounding street names, but slowly-slowly!

More to come......

 

 

Later.......

We both still want to see more of China.  With the new job, I'll get yearly vacation.  We want to travel by train to Beijing to see the sites; Xi'an to see the terra cotta soldiers; and down to the Hong Kong area to see it.

We both want to return to California in the middle of December to help celebrate my parents 60th Wedding Anniversary.  The entire family of 5 children, 8 grand-children, and 2 great grand-children will be taking a cruise to Mexico to celebrate!  Then Yanti & I will head to Las Vegas to be married in the United States.  No real reason for us to do this, but itíll be fun just the same.  How many of you were married in Vegas by Elvis?  Then back to San Francisco for News Years Eve and more celebrating! 

We look forward to seeing everyone!

.....Stay tuned!

Here is a great link for info about China Visa for anyone thinking about a visit:

http://www.asststork.com/pages/consulate.html#n_cal

 

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From top of JinMao Tower

 

 

 

     

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