Now that I've finished updating my pics from last week's trip to Japan,
let me jump back to the present: my mom's been visiting since tuesday.
Today I took her across the border to Shenzhen.
was mostly only interested in getting cheap gifts for her friends, etc.
The problem is that the only shopping i've ever done in SZ is for
electronics and DVDs... so it was a challenge to find the right places
Everyone goes to Lu0 Wu city mall, which is right across the border
(like 100 feet from the border crossing). But it was too insane in
there. every 5 feet there was some touter or shop keeping shouting
(worse than I ever get when I'm by myself... which is usually just
) Aggressive shop keepers like this is too much, it makes me want to start cursing people.
We decided to retreat and try another market I read about on wikitravel, the so-called
. It was a bit more reasonable and not purely designed at getting money out of foreigners:
its the 10 Yuan Fengbao! Some amazing stuff available here... one place
had a 9 LED flashlight with three AAA batteries, only $1.25! Even more
impressive was the 2 yuan store! :-P
This place was crazy crowded though. Every side street led to another 3
side streets + 3 malls full of small shops. Mostly clothes but also
lots of DVD shops and a few electronics places. My mom bought a lot of
cheap dress watches to give her friends. Of course I had to play 'bad
cop' in the negotiation phase. I pissed off more than a few shop
I'm surprised how much english some of these shop guys can speak, I
haven't ever needed to speak to them in english before, so I never
Of course lots of knock-offs, some blatant, some just bizarre:
Its the freaky bizarro Adidas... the
! (see blow-ups)
The hawkers weren't /that/ agressive here, but still a lot of 'hey
DVD!' people.... and a lot of old ladies panhandling (they always have
a bowl for some reason). At one shop a lady came up to us and the
shopkeepers started bitching her out, threatening to call the cops, etc.
WRT panhandlers: I've come to the conclusion that if they try to touch
you, you are required to (and entitled to) react aggressively. I
actually knocked the cup out of own old lady's hand when she started
grabbing onto my mom's sleave as we were trying to walk down the
street. Polite No's or even stern verbal warnings don't work anymore.
For some reason Shenzhen is the only city in China I've been to that
this is a real major problem....
Also for some reason tattoo parlors have become popular here... there
were bunches of middle-aged ladies milling about with laminated cards
advertising hair saloons, manicure/pedicure parlors and tattoo
parlors.... I'd say getting a tattoo in cheap tattoo parlor from
someone who comes up to you on the street is the 2nd stupidest thing
you could spend your money on (after the
laptop thing I mentioned last time).
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