Dalian China is the trading and financial center of northeastern Asia and has earned the nickname of “the Hong Kong of Northern China”. Russian and Japan had occupied this area off and on for the last 100 years or so and their influence is obvious in the architecture and the culture. We had a great visit to a local farmers market to see basically everything that swims in the ocean and crawls on land! This market was much cleaner and organized than the ones we experience in Cambodia and Vietnam. Amazing assortment of live seafood in tanks guarantees the freshness! We also discovered an array of dried animals like bats and turtles that are prized for food as well as medicinal purposes. With the longevity of this area being among the highest in world, maybe there is something to the dried bats? We spent the afternoon visiting a local family for tea and conversation. We were hosted by a lovely 74 year old women who was welcoming and happy to share her home and life story with us. Her and her husband were both retired and lived in this 280 sq ft apartment that handled all their basic needs, I could imagine living in the space these folks deal with, but with 1.3 billion people to house, I guess it is the way it has to be here! I will never complain about my house again. It was a great visit to Dalian. We are off to Tianjin (Beijing) China. Be Well. Michael and Cheryl.