How the Cookie Crumbles

An irreverant view of life after SIXTY-FIVE

Shanghai, Day 11, Part 5 – Nanjing Road Shopping and Stories

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Tummies full, we left the restaurant around 12:45 and the weather had become humid.

http://www.travelchinaguide.com/cityguides/shanghai/west-nanjing-road.htm (what’s on offer)

The shopping is pedestrian-friendly  with an occasional trolley / mini tour bus. Prominent other than McDonalds and Haagen-Daaz, were expensive big label stores. I wondered how the young couples afforded their clutched brand-named shopping bags.

The English Group 8 turned down (yet another) museum tour which added more (boring) shopping time. This time Sue and I struck out together. Four hours to kill. My poor aching feet.

On a shabby side street a couple of blocks from Nanjing Road, I bought a bottle of Dynasty wine in a grocery / variety store ($10.00 CAD / $8.00 USD). Not one corkscrew was in stock. I borrowed from Sue as I had siphoned all the cash out of my wallet for the silk-filled comforter and pillow before lunch.

If we needed the Happy House, Jackie advised any large hotel would accommodate us. Our choice was the Sofitel Hotel where, upon entering, we found ourselves facing a security guard. Nervous, but avoiding eye-contact, these fine western ladies strutted in as if we belonged and ended up (confused) on the garage level. Ph-ew the gas fumes.

Sue spotted a glass elevator. A tall Caucasian man, briefcase clutched, got on behind us. He had come from Michigan on business eight years before and considered himself a local now, his return to the U.S. doubtful. He pointed us to the closes ladies’ washroom.

Shopping Nanjing Road  (pictures galore)

Out on the street again, Sue spied a Haagen-Daaz restaurant. The timing couldn’t have been better for a good sit with ice-cream. We entered with Sue in the lead. A waitress stopped me at the door and said wrong way. The lineup at the opposite end of the restaurant was where we must enter. Oh? Back out to the sidewalk and the other door we trotted to join hordes of others. It didn’t take long, though, before we were seated.

We waited—and waited some more. Three young girls who’d arrived after us had already been given menus. We waited. With the earlier rush over, I chalked this up to bad service. We wondered about foreigner abuse, as well. A girl finally came bearing water glasses containing lemon wedges and menus. We didn’t touch the water.

At length, a waitress toddled over and took our order. One scoop of ice cream (chocolate with pralines) cost 33 Yuan each ($5.50 USD). We waited and waited for our order to arrive, but I didn’t mind. It was a relief to take a load off and sit.

Our bill took forever to come. I wondered why not go up to the cash with our dish to show what we’d ordered and pay. At home we’d have done this no problem, but Sue, usually brave about most things, wasn’t comfortable doing so. In the end, we did so anyway, but the cashier appeared frazzled. His rhythm had been broken and he made us wait. Again. I now owed Sue 83 Yuan, (not quite $14.00 US).

© 2014 Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© 2014 Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

Two things I noticed while we window-shopped. Beggars were uncommon. We had been discouraged from interacting with them. I noticed only two: one a disfigured man shortly after the bus dropped us off; the second, a miserable old man who shook a rusty tin can in our faces wanting a donation while we sat in a park. He rattled the meagre contents however we ignored him. He scowled and moved on, but sneered over his shoulder. I hoped he hadn’t put a curse on us.

Except for few citizens over the age of 40 or 50, most everyone on the street appeared to be under 25 or 30.
~ * ~

Next on November 14th, Shanghai, Day 11, Part 6 – Dinner and a Show

For more related posts, click on China tab at the top of the page

© 2014 All Right Reserved TAK

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Author: Let's CUT the Crap!

I'm getting a little LONG in the tooth and have things to say about---ouch---AGEing. I believe it's certainly a state of mind but sometimes it's nice to hear that you're NORMAL. I enjoy reading by the truckload. I'm a grandma but I don't feel OLD although I'm not so young anymore. My plan is to stick it out as long as I can on this lovely planet and only will leave it kicking and screaming!

118 thoughts on “Shanghai, Day 11, Part 5 – Nanjing Road Shopping and Stories

  1. I love your fabulous travelogue–when were you there, Tess?

    Liked by 1 person

    • THANK you. I was there 24 days from end of March and arrived home Easter Sunday this year.I look at some pictures and don’t recognize them, as if someone else took them. From the moment we landed, I believe I was on automatic pilot. We have a bit of a breather coming up. ❤

      Like

  2. So where are all the elderly ? Hand sweeping streets, now that would take some time. Sorry you both had to wait so long to be served, see I would have cracked it and walked out, but your weary tootsies needing some time off. Expensive scoop too! Hopefully you haven’t been cursed, he was wearing his grumpy pants it seems, then again if you’re begging for money, you would have them on all the time. Another constructive day out 😃

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    • The darn thing of it is the runners made my feet sweat and I paid $150 for them to do my feet, hips and back good because we knew there’d be a lot of walking.

      My guess is the unfortunates aren’t allowed in certain parts of the city, especially this shopping road where locals with daddy’s money and tourists frequent.

      The old people run little shops in the back streets and lanes. Seems just about every Ma and Pa run a business of some sort out of their house.

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  3. Tess, i bet your feet really were sore… Ouch.
    Shanghai looks so different from some of the other places you’ve shown. But what you said about everyone on the streets looking so young… I’ll call that sneaky-creepy. The kind of shiver down the spine that sneaks up on you. It makes me think of Logan’s Run! 😀 Huge hugs! Thanks for the visit to Shanghai!

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    • My feet suffered from sweat in $150 runners I bought to pamper my feet, hips and back because of the the walking I knew was on the agenda.I mean to go back to the store and have a talk about these shoes–just haven’t been in the vicinity.
      The young people WANT and love the glam stores and glam brands. I’m sure daddy’s money helps. Old people sweep back streets and don’t live for all this foolishness.

      When there I read a newspaper article about an old couple who swept the street for 23 years to pay off medical bills incurred for two sons they lost separatel diseases before they were each 20yo.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. What a nice day. Looks like a lot of walking going on and can understand your sore feet.

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  5. So, since you’ve been home, have you experienced any effects from that curse? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Good look running into the guy from Michigan. perfect timing. I would feel so lost in another country where I didn’t speak the language. People here in Orlando confuse me with their Spanglish.

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  7. That is interesting about so many youngers. I wonder… Did you ever get to tour the countryside?

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    • Yes, we did. Coming up much later as we worked our way from Beijing to Hong Kong. We experienced a bit of what they have on offer in China–the parts they wanted us to see. Still, there is so much we did not. Twenty-four days was getting too long and much more time would be required. I was glad to get home at the end.

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  8. Although difficult to wait so long what a welcome relief for the feet!

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  9. oh man, I’ve missed some of your posts 😦 too much going on I guess: mice somehow made their way into my house. still not completely sure they’re gone. had to buy a new oven due to mice infesting our old one….oh yes, the fun! heh. I’m currently in Florida visiting my mother so hopefully I have time to catch up on previous posts I missed. seems the tour is almost over yes?

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    • No, the tour is on day 11. We have 13 more to go. 🙂

      Hope you’re having a nice visit with your mother in Florida. I’m pleased you want to read more. I’m tickled and over the moon. Thank YOU.

      Sorry about the dang mice. I’ve had them in the city but worse in a village town when I was little. Our house didn’t have a foundation or a basement. It sat on those large cement foundation bricks on each corner and in the middle of each side. The house would sink after winter and my dad put wedges in on the guilty side because the kitchen floor sloped. 😀 😀

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      • we’re having a nice visit. oh wow, that must have been quite the house! hubby says there’s been no more droppings since I left on Wednesday but also no mice were caught in the traps? so there’s still one in the house but…..where?? hopefully we’re done with that! very unpleasant. but I guess there are worse things eh?

        oh boy, 13 more weeks??? alright, time to catch up then 🙂

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      • Mice are determined rodents and who can blame any ‘body’ wanting to find a free accommodations? 😀

        No, 13 days. If it was weeks I’d be writing about this forever. As it is, I have plenty of content for another six months maybe.

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      • well…but if you’re doing a post for each day and there are 13 days of the trip left then it’s 13 more weeks of posts? but then some of your days are into parts….oh well, never mind. I’ll just remember to look on Fridays 😀 (or Saturdays when I forget to look on Fridays, ha!)

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      • Some days take 5 posts. Shanghai is taking 6 parts for one day… 😀

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  10. You have the best memory of events. Do you keep a journal as you go along? Love tagging along.

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  11. What a lot of shoppers! I’ve just caught up with your post from the silk factory – I want one of those silk duvets. Have you used yours yet? Are you pleased with it?

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    • I’ve used the pillow but must get a cover for the duvet. It’s a light one. I live in a basement and the air conditioning in the spring and summer from upstairs (though all the vents were closed) convinced me to keep my winter quilt on the bed. Love the pillow because I don’t have to punch it of roll it in the night to get it just right as sometimes happens with other pillows. I just forms around your head and is comfortable. In the morning, I brush flat across it and it’s like new again. Not like a memory pillow (hate those), not hard and not soft: springy, but just right. I want to track down another pillow to give this one a rest.

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  12. sounds like fun! fantastic shots!

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  13. You must have been all shopped out by the end of this trip?

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  14. I never ever understand “bad service”. If your business depends on people coming in to you…why treat them poorly????? Like the guy you met on the elevator who stayed for 8 years, you might be back to that business!

    I would LOVE to see a picture of that comforter!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Okay, I just have to know…did you ever find a corkscrew? And why the long wait? Is that common over there? Fascinating how you picked up on the waiter’s break of rhythm. Also that is creepy that there were hardly any ‘senior citizens’ there 😉 I’m with you, I hate shopping but glad you got to rest your poor feet and eat some ice cream. The long break was good for that at least 🙂 Loving your walk through China Tess, each post thoroughly absorbing and fascinating 🙂 >3 😛

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    • I borrowed one for that night. Later I borrowed one again but forgot to return it. That’s another story.
      I always thought Chinese were efficient. I have no clue unless they didn’t like us. We WERE the only foreigners in the joint.
      About the senior citizens, I doubt they are interested in the glam shops and don’t have the money. They are at home in the back streets running home businesses of their own.
      Glad you’re still enjoying the tour. Sometimes I can’t make head or tail of what I’ve scribbled in my notebook and don’t remember what the heck something is. Even the pictures sometimes surprise me.

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  16. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Day 11 which is turning into a long day for the intrepid explorers in Shanghai including a lengthy wait for a scoop of ice-cream to fuel more shopping. No idea where these ladies got their stamina for this trip in China but enjoying it with my feet up.

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  17. What an amazing place!!

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  18. It seems a shame that they turned down so many museums in preference for shopping though. Luckily most of the time you were not really shopping, although not everybody likes museums either. It can become overwhelming in a very long trip. Shoes for long-trips are always difficult…

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    • One couple adored shopping. The other two couples discovered Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Hall and a Shanghai City Model. I wish I had stuck with them but I was on information overload.
      Still it was interesting to experience some of the things I didn’t include in my blog because those few days in Shanghai would go on forever. 🙂

      Like

  19. There is only one word that comes to mind as I read this – brutal!

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    • Sigh. So many stores but I liked the pedestrian friendly shopping idea. Yeah shopping isn’t my thing anymore but I imagine there are a lot of daddies making awesome money to hand over for the young peoples’ shopping experience.

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  20. I love shopping, especially in places I’m not familiar with, just to browse round even if I don’t plan on buying anything much, but if you’re not really into shopping then it must be a drag! Especially with tired feet, I can see why the ice-cream store was a lure, shame about the bad service – I’d have thought somewhere like that would be used to people from all different nationalities visiting, strange.

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    • We couldn’t figure out what the problem was. The place was half-filled by the time we were allowed in. I’ve always had this picture of efficiency where Chinese people come into the picture. Maybe it’s because we weren’t better dressed. All the young people were dressed very well. I don’t know. I’m grabbing at straws here.

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  21. Is waiting that long for food common there or just for foreigners, I wonder? I hope the ice cream was delicious! 🙂

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    • I have no idea. All the places we went for lunch and dinner had the food arrive at the table in five minutes. All prepaid with the tour.
      This was the first time we experienced an establishment on our own and had to pay for services.
      I’ve never been to Haagen Daas before this but have eaten the ice-cream. Feels expensive for one scoup ($5.50)

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  22. The pictures of the shopping street remind me somewhat of Singapore where shopping is a national pastime. Strange isn’t it, the level of service you receive when you are on your own. So did I miss it? How was the wine?

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    • I still can’t figure out about the service but it’s all over now. The pre-paid tour places we went to eat the the food on the table lickety-split.
      Two wines were recommended to drink: Dynasty and The Great Wall. It was okay. It certainly wasn’t Australian. I’d read about wine before the trip and was amazed China’s wines competed well but we didn’t see much other than the two I mentioned above. More wine story to come but not yet.

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  23. Ice cream and a “good sit” can always soothe the traveler’s soul. What a day of activity this is turning out to be!

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  24. Shoes, feet and walking – such important aspects of travel. I have a pair of the most comfortable shoes that take me everywhere – hiking, shopping, seeing the sights, travelling generally (and also to work each day)! Plain, black and lace up, they take years to wear out, they are very practical, but shoe lovers would probably think them boring 😆 My 5th pair are just about ready to be replaced 🙂
    I hate poor service in shops, and frankly, I don’t understand it. Perhaps you were ignored because you were foreign and the staff did not want to (or could not) try to understand you. It’s a pity, because people can communicate very effectively without needing a common language when they really want to.

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  25. The impressions you share from your trip to China continue to delight me! I also love your wonderful photographs.

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    • Thank YOU. I must remember to mention some of the photographs are not mine. A member or our tour has been kind enough to share photograph and I’ve chosen to choose which ones are the better I wish to share on my blog.

      Thank you Kate, for enjoying the “moments” (RJ and I have tried to capture). The wonderful option of sharing our individual photo captures is if some are more clear, better than others, why NOT make a better choice?
      Thanks so much for paying such close attention. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. That was really poor service. I wonder if it is because you were tourists? Fab photos again Tess. 🙂 ❤

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  27. Hi Tess! We eat a lot of ice cream in Ecuador, but here it’s around $1.20 per scoop. However, it is not Haagen-Daaz. I’m going to have to take a look at the earlier posts in this series. I’ve never been to China, but very much want to. By the way, we lived in Vietnam for a year, where the average age is, I believe, around 25. Asia is young, for the most part.

    I’m trying to get my butt back in the saddle. I did manage to post something a month ago, but have been busy teaching workshops, looking at self-hosting my blog and writing my memoir (yes, I’ve been doing that), but I will make an effort to get something new out this week, including photos of our new home.

    Sorry to have away for so damn long.

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

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    • I figured the old folk were home in the backstreets running their little businesses. They don’t have the money for glam shopping and wouldn’t have any use for it either.
      It’s true the young want it all, not only the ones who have access to daddy’s wallet.
      Haagen-Daaz is good ice cream but I wouldn’t want to pay that price again.
      Nice to see you back. I look forward to pictures and am so pleased you’re interested in catching up on my little China tour. Bless you. ❤

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  28. As a nine to fiver with big dreams, I love reading about other people’s travels! I have yet to leave the US (unless you count a brief accidental drive into Mexico, but that a whole other story), but in my travels to the various states, there’s often that brief moment when you wonder if you’re being treated differently because you’re an obvious tourist…I assume that feeling is magnified in foreign countries. So many cultural differences to contend with, but lots of fun too! Thanks for sharing this.

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    • I keep picking my brain and there’s only one other sin we might have committed. We came in the wrong door. When the waitress kinda yelled at us, the rest of the staff must have seen our boo-boo. but still that doesn’t make sense. Why the heck was that door not locked?
      I’m home. O’m okay. Water under the bridge but I thought it interesting to share.

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  29. Lovely photos! And you are an excellent story teller Tess.
    It would be very difficult being in another culture not knowing all the nuances. Exhausting at times, I imagine.
    Clearly- you made the best of it! Bet that ice cream tasted really good. 😉

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  30. It does make you wonder if the bad customer service was intentional. And where are the people older than 30?

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    • I know. the old people are probably in the back roads running little business from their houses. They don’t understand glam. They just want enough to eat. I’m making this up. Guessing.
      The bad service felt intentional. Because we came in the wrong door? Please…

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  31. I admire your patience. If I had to wait that long for ice cream I woulda started throwing chairs. OK, not really, but I have been known to be unpleasant when I’m hangry.

    I am so pleased to once again catch up with you and your China adventures. You are a marvelous storyteller.

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    • I needed a rest after walking, walking, walking. I didn’t care, but I couldn’t help wondering, why the cool shoulder.

      Thanks so MUCH for your kind words. I rather think YOU’re the marvelous storyteller, but I accept, those type words are music to our ears. ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  32. Lost while travelling, boy, oh boy, do I know what that’s like. But you meet the most interesting people that way. Thank you for the photos. They make me feel like I’m right there with you.

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  33. It never ceases to amaze me how tours manage to provide ample shopping time. I understand how this helps boost the tourism business but it can get aggravating.

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    • Sorry, I didn’t add to the tourism business. 😀
      That ice cream broke me. 😀 😀 Not that I’m much of a shopper anymore.

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      • Tess – Your participating in the tour added to the tourism business. I’m not sure how it is in Canada but here in the US a scoop of Baskin Robbins at the regular Baskin Robbins store can easily be $5-$6. I was shocked when I learned how much the tour companies pay in fees and licensing to do business in the countries they enter, etc.

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      • I paid $5.50 CAD so it’s about the same.
        I hadn’t thought about fees and licensing. The tour company we signed up with was a Chinese tour company out of Montreal. The travel agent had a heck of a time filling out our forms for Visa and had to keep calling for clarification.
        BTW, as well, this tour was so cheap we also heard it was subsidized by the Chinese government. The tour people we used have been in operation for 9 years.

        Liked by 1 person

  34. I haven’t visited Shanghai. I have, however visited Guandong Province in 2008. At that time I remember being struck by the fact that not a single establishment accepted credit or debit cards, (you get so used to the facility to make cashless payments in the west so it is quite a shock to come across a place where cash remains virtually unchallenged as king)! I enjoyed this post. Kevin

    Like

    • Aren’t credit cards plentiful where there is money to be had?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, but parts of Guangdon are quite wealthy and even the good quality hotel in which I stayed didn’t accept them. However things may be rather different in 2014.

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      • We’ve had credit cards shoved down our throats for years now so we are used to them. Maybe even in Guangdon, plastic isn’t considered the way to go because we are talking about years and years of different cultural thinking. Maybe?

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      • Perhaps you are right. Credit cards can, in any case be problematic in that they encourage people to spend money they don’t have. This is fine if the outstanding balance is cleared at the end of each month. However, in many instances this doesn’t happen which leads many with a millstone of debt around their neck. In my case it was my debit (not credit) card which it would have been handy to use.

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      • Credit cards certainly have changed North America’s greed for instant gratification and learned bad spending habits.

        I agree, access to debit machines is so different than credit.

        I just remembered, in Macau there were credit and debit machines in the casino. I wasn’t carrying any but I recall passing them.

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  35. I enjoyed your pics and interesting account of your day. That ice cream was really expensive, but at least you got to sit down for a while. 🙂 I didn’t find stores and restaurants to be at all friendly in China. The assistants seemed to bark orders at us. I remember going into a clothing boutique, and starting to try on a jacket. I really got shouted at, “No try on! No try on!” How do they ever sell anything? 😕

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    • Interesting. Tell me more. This shopping day and the couple hours the day before, are the only times we dealt with any retail keepers on our own. One guide or another was always present for the rest of the trip.
      No try on? What the heck?

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  36. I can totally relate to the sore feet issue. It’s been ten years since I went to Italy with my husband, and sadly, my feet still bother me. I read in a travel guide to wear pretty shoes. The logic was so a tourist wouldn’t stand out by looking like a tourist. Why didn’t I listen to my friend who told me she didn’t care how ugly her shoes were, just so long as her feet were happy.
    I hope your feet are feeling better.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. As per waiting for ice cream, I’m glad Hubby and I weren’t waiting. I can handle it. Him—mmm, not so much. 😉

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  38. I’m struck by how European the architecture is. The building in your big middle photo could easily be in Paris, or Zurich, or a dozen other cities/countries.

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