I went for a run around the canal again this morning and the streets were really busy! Not only with pedestrians but also with mopeds and cyclists! I had to dodge a whole fleet of mopeds crossing the path to even get to the road crossing- China’s making me a lot more observant when running!
To avoid the craziness of the streets I popped into the outdoor fitness area for a HIIT session. I wanted to feel the burn of the muscles in my legs and this seemed like the best place to do it.
There were only guys in the area when I arrived and they all stopped and stared at me as I walked past. It wasn’t done in a creepy way, it was more of shock at a white girl working out in the local park… I started doing step ups on a near by bench – alternating between press ups, jumps, step ups and 90• step ups- and a few girls appeared and started to join in! It was hilarious because as I was giving myself 30 seconds recovery in between each set they were looking at me expectantly waiting for me to start again!
Towards the end of my workout I noticed that there was another fitness area opposite the one that I was currently in, surrounded by trees and with a few women working out! I’ve noticed that women here seem to favour low intensity workouts like slow dancing and Thai chi rather than running and jumping around. The women here were using the gym equipment to help them stretch. I did a little bit of a bar workout and abs session before I realised it was almost 9am and Leah and I had plans for the day!
We bought our bus tickets from the bus station for the next stop on our journey through China- Songpan- (leaving on Wednesday) and then jumped on the metro to the People’s Park. We had a quick lunch in a dumpling restaurant near the park (The traditional dumpling filler in China is pork so I tend to avoid ordering them unless they explicitly say vegetable only, so ordered a plate of vegetables and rice instead) and after walking 10 minutes to find a spot to cross the busy road (there was a gate going the whole way) we finally entered the park.
It was so pretty!
It had a large lake in the centre where people were renting both row and motor boats for the afternoon. There were even people dancing on the edges of the park listening to the radio.
We had our first experience of a real Chinese Teahouse this afternoon at the oldest Teahouse in Chengdu. The Teahouse was really busy but we managed to find a seat outside on the bamboo chairs by the lake. I ordered a lemon tea and Leah went for jasmine tea – both came with unlimited hot water so we just kept topping up our cups (we think leah had about 6 cups of tea!).
Men in white coats were ‘professionally’ cleaning people’s ears with utensils they brought out of their pockets (and didn’t clean) whilst they sat drinking their tea! It was really strange to watch and not something me or leah wanted to experience!