Crossing the river as evening creeps gently into a Friday is something I enjoy greatly. I find it a warmly symbolic way of starting my weekend, leaving behind the modern skyline of Lujiazui’s (陆家嘴) financial district and gently stepping ashore to the historic Bund.
You smirk at the tourist babble, isn’t that the opening paragraph to Foder’s travel guide or Lonely Planet? but I guarantee you that such a ride at dusk can be quite magical.
The whole point of the ferry (RMB 2 from Lujiazui’s Dongchang Lu ferry station (东昌路船渡)) is to avoid the hideous tunnel traffic leading from East to West of the Huangpu River. As routine as it feels for me, a white collar worker taking a water taxi to and from work, what I love most is mingling with wide-eyed tourists who rekindle the warm feelings I have for Shanghai.
When the sty-like gates of the ferry open, people would rush for the best seats. No matter to me for we all share the same view. With my Ipod on a melodious trip, I observe the endless gawking and shared moments between couples and among families soaking in our fair city.
Once in a while, when I’m not in too much of a hurry, I stroll along the Bund to bask in the evening breeze and muse at the unfettered activity of tourist photography. Chinese tourists automatically turn to Lujiazui while Western tourists veer towards the Bund, aspirations and nostalgia respectively aligned.
A quick jaunt later, you dive back into the city’s embrace and back to regular programming. If you ever tire of the city, a quick rekindle of a love affair with Shanghai is required. And a boat ride across the river at dusk can do just that.
P.s. Like a million others, I’ve been very enamoured by Instagram but have been quite restrained from peppering my musings all over this blog. Nevertheless, you can follow me at sueannetay.