China 1993

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When I was growing up in Walsall in the 1950s, I saw many factory windows just like this.
Wuxi is the 'Venice of China' - it's on the Grand Canal, once one of China's main trading routes, stretching over 1,000 miles from Beijing to the south.
Most of the canal barges are made of concrete, and house whole familes with kids and dogs, and sometimes a potted plant or two.
Our next stop was Shanghai, the largest city in Asia, with over 11 million people. Before the war, Shanghai was 'sin city', and many of the buildings on The Bund are unchanged. We went to a jazz night at the 1920's 'Peace Hotel'.
Shanghai has many busy shopping streets like this. It reminded us a lot of Nathan Road in Hong Kong.
Hey, I still have that shirt!
We saw many interesting signs in China!
Chinese currency is the Yuan (top), though tourists are supposed to use Foreign Exchange Certificates (bottom). Chinese traders will have none of that, and will take only US dollars!
In the back alleyways of Shanghai. As in every Chinese town, almost everyone seems to be buying or selling food, carrying food home from market, cooking, or eating.
Our last stop in China was the little town of Ningbo. We were the first overseas group to visit Ningbo, and were warned that they had no idea what kind of reaction to expect.
They need not have worried, several hundred people turned up to meet us....
Grandparents dressed in their best clothes, bringing kids!
All of the many people we met in China were pleasant, and happy to see us!
Everyone was smiling and laughing to see so many strange foreigners!
We think that Chinese people are not so different from us, after all!

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