November in China: Fried Rice Un-Paradise

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Since Yangzhou was on the way back from Nanjing and Tangshan, we thought we’d stop by at the capital of fried rice. In Mandarin, fried rice is generally referred to as Yangzhou fried rice, just like fried beehoon with curry powder is called Singapore fried noodles and chicken rice is called Hainan chicken rice. We stopped for lunch at a fairly large restaurant and had an abysmal Yangzhou fried rice, complete with yucky extra-large and extra-starchy frozen peas. Yuck. It wasn’t the best experience, especially since the wait staff starting changing into their street clothes and switching off the lights at 1.30pm even though we weren’t even halfway through lunch!

We also stopped by Yangzhou’s biggest attraction, Shou Xihu (literally: skinny West Lake). It’s modelled after the many West Lakes all over China, in particular the one at Hangzhou. There’s of course a skinny lake and it’s surrounded by atmosherically grim weeping willows and lots of bridges and pavilions. The dreary weather, for once, added to the feel of the place.

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It was a long walk round the park and we only made it halfway round before giving up and heading back.

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Grey weather and tourist hordes notwithstanding, it was a decent place to spend a few overpriced hours. It is in the end just a garden.

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Though it did have some pretty but ageing flowers.

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