Still reeling from yesterday’s news. Sensing that I was in a quite a glum mood, my other set of grandparents decided to take me out to Qing He Fang, one of my favorite places in Hangzhou, to clear my mind. Since — lets call her A — is running more tests and visitors are restricted until later in the afternoon, I acquiesced.
Qing He Fang, or He Fang Jie, is a famous historical street from the Southern Song Dynasty that is one of Hangzhou’s top shopping destinations. The street is lined with all sorts of shops selling exquisite, albeit tourist-priced, souvenirs and local flavor goods. The antique buildings, historical relics, and unique offerings attract thousands of visitors daily. Qing He Fang is only a few miles away from West Lake, and one end leads to Hangzhou’s famous Flower & Bird Market and Wu Shan Square, another public square that comes alive at night with music and dancing locals of all ages.
I have a lot of wonderful memories here too. Back in the summer of 2008, Cece & I were shopping here and met Sean & David on the street. They reached out since we were speaking English, and the four of us ended up hanging out and creating a lot of fun memories in Hangzhou. Every summer that I’ve been back since, my grandparents would take me here for a nice stroll and treat me to a delicious meal at the nearby Zhi Wei Guan, famous for its delicious xiao long bao and tasty South Chinese cuisine. This past January, K & I visited this historic street on our 10th monthiversary. We had clay figures sculpted of our faces, and even attracted a huge crowd.
I actually had fun today. I visited my favorite stores, spent some quality time with my grandparents, and pigged out on a huge, deliciously fatty lunch at Zhi Wei Guan. While my mind kept going back to A, I really did feel a new sense of appreciation toward everything I have, especially the love of my family that I have been taking for granted.
Still trying to digest. Still trying to get over my guilt.