Aug 2 2011

Nanjing 南京

Nanking and Nankin is the capital of Jiangsu province in China.

Nanjing was the capital for few different regiments or reigns over long period of time, but I’ve never heard it’s the jade capital, until we met our tour guide for the Nanjing leg of the travel.

He claimed that his father was one of handful expert in jade in China, and was invited overseas for conferences. He wears a jade pendant that he passed it around, let us see, touch and feel as the bus was in motion.
“There is a saying, 月下看美女,日下看美玉, it’s best to look at beauty under the moon and inspect a jade under the sun.” and he went on to educated us how to determine a nice jade:
1. 种 – clarity
2. 色 – color
3. 工 – cutting, craving skill
Oh, make sure there isn’t have bubble 气泡.


After lunch in Wuxi, we arrived in Nanjing in the early afternoon of Monday Aug 1. We rendezvous with the guide by the city wall, near the 江苏省文物博物馆 Jiangsu Province Culture/history Relic Museum where his Dad once worked, in charge of jade collection (?). We were first drove over to see the pride of China: 南京大桥 Bridge of Nanjing; upper deck for autos and lower deck for trains. It required no foreign experts nor materials. Purely made and built in China, by the Chinese. Now it felt old and crumbling. No matter. it’s the effort that count. After the bridge, we were deposited at the 夫子庙 Confucius Temple, then went to dinner at 向阳鱼港 Sunward Fishery Restaurant. The restaurant has many jade exhibits.
The following day, we were taken to the jade store first thing in the morning. Many heads of state visited and bought from here, we were told. Their business card reads:
南京旅游国际购物中心 – Nanjing Shopping Center For International Tourist
秦淮区晨光路39号 – located at 39 Chenguang Road, Qinhuai District
025.5233.1969

I’m not sure if the building has other divisions but we were at the second floor that sells jade. The 12 animal zodiac signs were asking for ¥2,000 but a tour mate bargained it down to ¥200. So scores of mates bought. Why not, it’s effortless.
There is a private room with more substantial goods, selling upward ¥500k and more.
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My cousins, sisters Sophie and Zhen, each bought a oval shaped bracelet because the jadeite are from the same stone. The listing price is ¥20,000. They bargained down to ¥5,000. When cashier told them their credit card or debt card only had ¥3,000, the store drawn up this IOU: the remaining ¥7,000 would deposit into their bank account upon their return to Beijing, no later than August 14. The baby sitter tour guide would be the guarantor – my Uncle did not sign the IOU. My two cousins happily left the store with the jadeite bracelet.

After showing me some very gorgeous pieces in the private room, we settled on this one. The negotiation began, from listing price ¥50,400 to ¥13,000. I made a final offer of ¥12,800 … and they took it. When I begin paying, did I realize the mistake that I left home without the Amex. (Long story, well .. a short one: because I’m lazy. Carrying an extra credit card needs an effort. That’s how lazy I’m ! Sometimes I don’t even understand myself .. ). Thank lord Pumpkin has hers. But we didn’t call the bank that they should expecting foreign charges. Aha, worry not. The Nanjing store has seen it many times, they called up my bank in the USA without a blink. Everything was a sail, except there’s $300 limit on her card. I must looked dishonest becasue the store didn’t want to draw up another IOU. By that time, the second floor was empty, almost everyone was back at the bus. The manager said she’ll keep it for me for a month. I actually decided not to buy it on the spot: she didn’t seal it with my signature as what a store in the US would do. This certificate of gem identification (above and the two below) is for the piece.

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夫子庙 Confucius Temple


Aug 2 2011

The riders in Hangzhou

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Aug 2 2011

Dragon Well tea village 梅家坞

After West Lake and the park, we visited tea village of 梅家坞 Meijia Wu Youtube video

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According to wiki, there are four tiers of tea:

西湖龙井在生态条件和炒制工艺上被按产地分为狮,龙,云,虎四大类:

狮为龙井村狮子峰一带,包括以狮子峰为中心的胡公庙、龙井村、上天竺、棋盘山一带,此处出产的西湖龙井被称为狮峰龙井,是西湖龙井中的上品,香气纯,颜色为“糙米色”;
龙为翁家山、杨梅岭、上下满觉陇、白鹤峰一带,此处出产被称为石屋四山龙井,其中翁家山所产可以媲美狮峰龙井;
云为云栖、梅家坞、十里琅铛之西、五云山一带,是西湖龙井产量最大的地区。此处出产被称为梅坞龙井,色泽翠绿,外形美观;
虎为虎跑、四眼井、赤山埠、三台山一带,后来又包括了其他一些湖边平地的茶园。

只有这四个地方出产的龙井茶才有资格称为西湖龙井,在销售的包装上,会贴有原产地地理标志,注明西湖产区,并且贴有杭州市质量监督局的二维防伪条码,如果是明前茶,往往还会附有炒制者的姓名。西湖产区在地图上东起虎跑、西至何家村,北起老东岳,南至浮山,共168平方千米。

离开西湖产区的龙井茶曾经被称为湘湖旗枪,现在被称为浙江龙井,主要有杭州临安、富阳、萧山一带的钱塘产区和绍兴的越州产区等。钱塘产区的龙井亦被业内称为钱塘龙井。

According to this lady tour guide, she claimed that Meijia Wu has the best terrain among five villages.

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We did tea tasting. The teas they were trying to sell, was so so because the leaves were ugly, and broken up. The good dragon well tea’s leaves are whole and large. I didn’t buy but my cousin did. The tour guide kept encouraging us to charge the purchase to our USA credit cards and promised that they would pay for the transaction fee. I made other purchases on the tour and when I looked at my cc statement, did I realize they charged as a US$ denomination merchant.

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Out side of our hotel room, we found a marriage certificate. I handed it to the front desk and hope they’ll find its owner. (in storage)


Aug 2 2011

By the West Lake

After the boat ride, we visited this park by the lake. Aside from crowds, we saw a girl pees by the curb when the bathroom is just over the bushes. After lunch, we were taken to the tea village.

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Aug 2 2011

Speechless 哑口无言

The bathroom is just over the bushes! They spoke in dialog.

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Another pee… in Hong Kong


Aug 2 2011

Hangzhou Xihu 杭州 西湖

On our way (on Youtube and FaceBook) to  Xihu from the hotel.

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Aug 2 2011

Braim Canal Hotel area

百瑞運河大飯店
浙江省杭州市拱墅區金華路58號 310015
周围环境好 – 京杭运河. A decent hotel with nice surrounding area – the JingHang or Grand Canal. There is a namesake museum. I took a wonderful morning walk before the breakfast. After breakfast we headed to Xihu 西湖. The riders of Hangzhou
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