Our luggage has gone and we caught the fast train. There are 4 main railway stations in Shanghai and a multitude of smaller stations. Our railway station is next a brand new airport and also newly built. Infact it looks like an airport. Unlike our railway stations in the UK, it is modern, spacious, clean, with lots of comfortable seating and plenty of toilets.
We are early, so whilst sitting there in that shiny new railway station, I have time to reflect. Firstly, I can’t help drawing comparisons between China and India – the 2 fastest developing economies in the world. Both countries have a population of over a billion. India is democratic; China is not!! China seems so modern and everything seems to work and run on time. I love India, but can’t help thinking as I sit here in this ultra modern railway station about the filthy run down stations in my second homeland, India. But at least india is democratic and free. Even if the infastructure leaves a lot to be desired and it is so over populalated. As my guide points out -China has no democracy and its people accept what the government decides and do not question it. If the government says only one child per couple then that is how it is. This policy would not work in India.
The train was ultra modern and fast – 300 km per hour.
Hangzhou is a nice city on the lake but I can’t quite understand why we are here. We spend a nice afternoon, having a boat ride and visiting atemple and a tea plantation. Actually, I fell asleep as we were sitting tasting the green tea at the tea plantation. Tomorrow we will fly to Beijing for the real highlights of the tour.
I really need to get a good night’s sleep tonight – haven’t slept since I arrived in China and I am pretty tired. At bedtime, my body just kicks back to UK time and I am wide awake.