Because I had visited this Shanghai train station a few times in 2013, the arrival and transfer to metro, as well as using the metro, was easy. I found another Muslim noodle place on the way to my accommodations, a 2nd bedroom in Andy's girlfriend's apartment. Andy's girlfriend, Lingling, has been a friend since getting to know her when she was just finishing up a masters at Portland State, and I had been with Andy on his first visit to her meet her parents in their hometown of Wenzhou back in 2013.
Since I had already seen much of Shanghai in 2013, and it was raining -- I just used my time in Shanghai to relax and get ready to finish this trip. I finished up blog entries and made time to meet up with Lingling at a mega-shopping mall near her work for a lunch.
Tonight, October 30, I am at a hotel not far from the airport -- checked in for my 11:40am flights on Halloween to Tokyo connecting to Portland. The flights will give me back the hours stolen from me by crossing the date line when I began this journey -- and I get back to Portland one hour before I leave Shanghai (10:40am on Halloween)!
Some final thoughts:
- I find it freeing to think that every material thing I needed for 28 days away from home I was able to pack on me -- and I haven't driven any vehicle in the same amount of time.
- as you can tell from this blog, it's been an amazing trip that exceeded every expectation.
- after 28 days, I'm ready to be home -- and enjoy some of my comfort food!
- I'm already thinking about when I can return to get my scuba certification and more diving in Bali and begin another journey to SE Asia.
The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I -
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.