We woke up Tuesday morning with this view from our hotel room window. I know that it doesn’t show much without a before comparison, but the air had been horrible the first two days we’d been in Tianjin and we’d only been able to see a handful of these buildings. It was a clear day, perfect for all the “seeing” we had planned for Tianjin.
First up, the Tianjin Radio and TV Tower (very similar to the CCTV tower in Beijing). It was fun to go to the top and almost be able to see to the ocean. Maybe on an even clearer day, the ocean would have been visible. It’s 415 meters, so it’s actually 10 meters taller than the tower in Beijing. Inside it has pictures of other tall towers. It was fun to see the Eiffel Tower (which I’ve been to), the Tokyo Tower (which I’ve been to), the CN Tower in Toronto (which B’s been to) and the John Hancock Center (which we’ve all been to). Plus some other buildings we plan to see, like the Pearl Tower in Shanghai.
While up in the tower admiring the views it wasn’t Squirt and the other kids who drew a crowd, it was me. Maybe they didn’t see the rest of the family, or maybe they just wanted a picture of the crazy foreigner with FOUR kids. I had to spend a great deal of time while an older woman tried to take a picture of me with her husband on her cell phone camera. I was trying hard not to crack up because she had the camera so low, it was obvious our heads weren’t going to make the picture. Her husband just sort of shrugged and smiled at me after he saw what his wife had captured. But then I had to have my picture taken with the wife and two of her friends. Eventually they had me track down a kid for a picture, but the family was scattered about so I don’t think they ever ended up with a picture of all four kids, unless they were standing behind me while I took a picture (which happens a lot).
This was near a church we didn’t actually end up going in but it looks cool.
This was an area called Ancient Cultural Street full of lots of little vendors.
We then walked to Tianjin Nanshi Food Mall. It has a McDonalds, and some other sit down style restaurants, but mostly it’s just people selling their food, or street foods, but off the street. It’s a two story, mall-like building (although as far as we could tell, the 2nd story was closed). I’d promised the kids we’d warm up on hot chocolate after the whole, Ancient Cultural Street plus a long walk, freezing part of the day. We SLOWLY drank hot chocolate at a McDonald’s, even skimming the cooler part off the top with a straw.
We tried Jian Bing (which B’s students had told him was the street food he loves and described to them, it wasn’t, but we wanted to try Jian Bing now).
Part 2 coming soon to a new blog post.