On Monday we followed in the steps of Monty Don by visiting The Humbler Administrator’s Garden in Suzhou. But first we had to buy rail tickets. If hell is hot an sweaty then I’ve found hell on earth the Shanghai Railway Station ticket office. We lined up only to find that we had to go to another queue for English speakers. It seems like most Chinese are also English speakers so the queue felt very very slow! Only standing tickets were available. I was now getting very concerned, expecting an Indian style crush with me hanging out the door. But everything got better as soon as we arrived at the waiting lounge, air condition, free water from Tibet. Even better the train that turned up was a new High Speed train. Very impressive. In fact the Chinese rail system is very impressive in the way it handles the numbers.
We were feeling a bit lazy so we accepted an offer from a tout for van for 6 hours at the cost $20, less walking, happier legs. Off course we knew there would be a catch and were prepared. I got some ties and a pillow case or two at a silk shop 🙂 and we had a chartered boat for the cruise which was a little more expensive than a regular cruise would have been.
I guess at this stage you’d expect me to write something about the garden. Well the garden is very impressive. But can I do a Monty? No! I suggest you check out his DVD. In the mean time admire the photos we’ve uploaded.