Back to my second home in Zhaoqing. travel blog

The Star Hotel, behind the Star Lake Mall, and overlooking the lake.

The Star Hotel, behind the Star Lake Mall, and overlooking the lake.

The Star Hotel, behind the Star Lake Mall, and overlooking the lake.

The Star Hotel, behind the Star Lake Mall, and overlooking the lake.

Enjoying the lifestyle in a very up-market hotel.

Enjoying the lifestyle in a very up-market hotel.

Even at such an up-market place, there are still many, many scooters...

A new shopping experience. A pedestrian arcade between the mall and the...

A rather lazy day today, spending a lot of time uploading photos, and in between while waiting for each batch up load, working on my cross-stitch, which is getting near to completion. Perhaps I will have to go and spend another massive $4 on another one soon.

I had been receiving messages from a girl I met on the bus the other day, and we arranged to meet after Scott's class this afternoon. Sui Xin is a second year nursing student, but is not in the intensive English class. She is concerned, and wishes to improve her spoken English. Judging by her messages, her writing is fine, but with few opportunities for practice, her speaking is not so good.

Scott's class was fun today. He worked a theme around the latest mass shooting in the US, where a young man entered a church in Texas and opened fire, murdering a large number of people. It was very interesting to hear their thoughts. Most of them could not see a reason for normal citizens to need guns at all. Scott gave them various topics around the reasons for and against strict gun control, and most were very passionate in their feelings. Bill, one of only two boys, spoke quite eloquently about his opinion that as we have the police and army to protect us, he could see no reason at all for the broader population to have guns at all.

Toward the end of the class, Scott called on one of the girls who had been set the task of presenting a news item to the class. Wow! Had she done well! She presented a power point presentation, summarizing a new romantic movie, with Korean stars. She did a pretty good job of narrating her show, and got a great reaction from her fellow students. Of course, the girls are all madly in love with Korean pop and film stars!!

After class, I met up with Sui Xin, and I told her I could give her half and hour of my time at the moment, as I needed to go into town, to get some shopping.

We sat and chatted for a while, but it is pretty hard, as her self image, when it comes to her spoken English is rather challenging. But, judging by her written messages on WeChat, her writing is way ahead of her speaking. Not at all unusual here in China, among English learners.

When it was time for me to go, she walked me out to the bus stop, and we agreed to meet again, when we both have some time to spare.

I got a #8 bus into town. It is a rather roundabout way to get there, but it terminates at the huge bus terminal, where there is an office, to put credit onto my bus card. Sadly, the office was already closed by the time I got there. At least I now know that their opening hours are between 8.30 and 5.30.

On Saturday night, while stuck in traffic, waiting to get into parking under Star Lake Mall, I noticed a branch of the cheesecake shop, Queen's Code 2014. (What relevance the name has, who knows!) So, I decided to look for it. I walked all the way behind the shopping mall, past a huge new hotel, The Star Hotel which looks over the lake. And I would imagine it would be seriously expensive. But it looks gorgeous.

Between the hotel and the mall is a new shopping experience in the form of a pedestrian mall, with shops, snack food places, and even tables and chairs scattered for the comfort of the patrons. Looks lovely, but of course the shops will all be high end.

I got into RT Mart, to get my shopping, and was surprised at how much I got for really how little money. I spent 241.3 rmb, which converts to $47.32, and I got such a lot for that money. I will list my shopping here -

Yoghurt 7 x 240 ml tubs

Muesli Australian 1 kg

Toilet rolls x 12

Snickers mini bars pack of 12

Coffee - sachets of coffee + milk + sugar x 42


Tomato x 1

Moisturizer 1 x Nivea 200 ml

Salt - in a shaker pack.

Toothbrushes - a two-pack

I was impressed.

I had some fun in the supermarket, trying to find moisturizer firstly. All the containers look much the same, and until you can find some English on the pack, you have no idea if it is shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, or what!! In the end I used the translate tool on my phone, and was directed to the right section. The one that was pointed out to me was very expensive, but once in the right area, I could choose my own price! But, the next obstacle that I needed to overcome was to be assured that this moisturizer contained no whitening agent. That was not so difficult, once again with the handy translate app!!

Then downstairs into the rest of the store, to look for salt. I did find what I thought was salt, and had it confirmed by one of the workers looking at what the translate app came up with!! Phew, that was not so hard after all!

It does give me a great sense of achievement when I can actually make sense of shopping, with confirmation about what I am buying!

And then I headed to Starbucks. I don't go much on their coffee, but I wanted to see what food they had, and I was surprised to find packs of salad. The one I got was smoked chicken, with salad. It came with all the dressings to mix with it, and made it a really fresh, tasty meal. And all for 26 rmb. Maybe $5. I'll definitely be back again.

From there, I headed for home, with shopping in tow. It had been a really good day again!

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