14 May 2013

Time flies...

One year ago we arrived in this crazy city, we started our 6 weeks of training and soon enough we started flying all aorund the globe!

Everyone of us with our own rosters, coming and going, enjoying all those places (some more than the others), living and working with lots of different people, nationalities, religions, languages every single day, missing our homes, friends, families, and each others!

Growing up, changing our views, learning from each others or teaching others something, falling in and out of love, feeling good and bad, sick and alone, nostalgic, happy and excited, making new friends, starting new life or returning to old ones...
All of those things has happened to every single one of us, and to you too my known and unkonwn readers. But, it still feels so much different, it still feels unreal, time flies by, flight after flight, month after month and you don't even feel it!

So here it goes, my year in photos...last years memories!

How it all began...

...the best period to remember - time spent in training college :D

First layover... Joburg, South Africa
"You can't save time. You can only spend it. But you can spend it wisely or foolishly.”
Bangkok :)

Zurich, Switzerland

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

First visit home to marry my beautiful blonde :)
And today I wish her a very happy birthday as well :)))

“How quick and rushing life can sometimes seem, when at the same time it's so slow and sweet and everlasting.” 

Cape Town, South Africa 

Dusseldorf, Germany

Perth, Australia

...spending days (and nights) in Dubai :)

“Time deals gently only with those who take it gently.”

Brisbane, Australia


...is it possible to find just a few favorite ones?
Lovely 'Paris is always a good idea...' :)

“It's funny. No matter how hard you try, you can't close your heart forever.
And the minute you open it up, you never know what's going to come in.
But when it does, you just have to go for it! Because if you don't, there's not point in being here.” 
More of Dubai nights :)

Second vacation back home, another fairytale wedding...

“Time doesn't take away from friendship, nor does separation.”

Xmas & New Year

Sao Paulo, Brasil

Casablanca, Morroco

New Zealand

Happy birthday to me :)


Barcelona, Spain

2 vacations in London

“Lost, yesterday, somewhere between sunrise and sunset, two golden hours, each set with sixty diamond minutes. No reward is offered for they are gone forever.”
Shanghai, China


08 May 2013

Shanghai baby! :)

Another China layover...

But first of all I wanna point out that I decided to change my blog's name, as you can see :) I've been thinking about it for some time now and here it is, Come fly with me... Sounds more suitable hehe, hope you all don't mind? :)
No need for explanation why but now the names match on facebook, instagram and here finally :)

The two Chinese characters in the city's name 'shang' & 'hai' means - upon the sea.

That being said let's return to the subject... I must confess I don't like traveling East, when we go into plus something hours, I get sleeping disorder instantly :) and flying hours coming back are always 2hours longer then going there so it looks like we are traveling twice as longer, it's all in our heads :)

BUT this time I had a nice crew again so it was easier to work a busy Asian flight with a bunch of instant cup noodles to prepare every 3 seconds :)
Asian people LOOOOVE to drink tea, mostly they bring their own so all they want is hot water (every 3 seconds), the ones that don't bring their own tea and still are asking for only hot water I wondered...why? Hot water is good good for your skin, and they say you should drink one cup of hot water with just a few slices of lemon after every meal, instead of cold water, cause it helps your digestion. Little tricks for whoever wants to try :))

Shanghai, People's Republic of China (PRC) - GMT + 7
Flying hours - 7
Local currency - RMB - renminbi (literally means people's currency, the primary unit of renminbi is the yuan)
Religion - Taoism, Buddhism, Islam...
Population - cca 23million people which makes it the largest city in China and the largest city proper by population in the world!
It is a major financial centre and the busiest container port in the world!

Reaching hotel we were capable only to take a shower and fall a sleep :) so we can get up in the morning for some sightseeing!

Only one person was up for it, up for something else than shopping in an underground market so we went early in the morning, took a map of the city, downloaded applications about sights to visit and took a metro which is pretty easy considering you're in China haha :) And it's very cheap, one journey ticket 2 rmb.

First stop was The Bund on the Huangpu riverside, one mile long with all those beautiful historical buildings and a view across the river that wasn't really a view cause of the weather. :) 
That's why we didn't went on the Pearl tower (the one that has an amazing view of the city). Something to do next time right?

HSBC Building, the Municipal Government Building

I found out that Shanghai has its own Charging bull statue, you know, like the one in New York, so I wanted to see it. Interesting facts about this Mister Bull Big Balls (pardon my french) is that was designed by the same artist who created the Wall Street one.

It is the same size as the American one, except it is 'redder, younger and stronger' representing Shanghai's fast growing economy and future as a world financial centre. Shanghai officials had requested that it should be twice as heavy as the one in NY, looking younger and stronger.

The last thing to notice is that the Shanghai bull's head looks up, while the NY one looks down, which represents the energy of the local economy.

After a walk by the river we walked to Yu Yuan (Yu) Garden, but before that we had to eat something, so, as I said, not being the biggest fan of Asian cuisine we ended up in Mc'Donalds of course :)

All fed up and ready to roll we came to the entrance of Yu Garden... it is pretty interesting, I love to read about Chinese (and Japanese) mithology so I red one book about a year ago, a goodbye present from one of my friends, Peony in love, Lisa See, about a young girl who starved herself to death because of love. (wow that sounds depresing, but it actually emphasize the difficulty 19th and 17th century Chinese women had in achieving freedom and identity in a society that was male dominated)
Because her funeral rituals are not concluded properly, she becomes a "hungry ghost", who wanders in the world in between until the appropriate funeral rites at last were given to her and she became a spirit.
While being a hungry ghost she was saying how she can't 'go around the corner, mentioning that several times, so when we came to the Bridge of Nine turnings, and I red what my app guide says about the bridge I remembered this book!
According to popular mithology, demons are affraid of corners and are only able to travel in straight lines. The bridge has a zig zag pattern that keeps any malicious spirits to cross a large koi pond and get into the Yu Garden.

The Bridge of Nine Turnings crosses an artificial lake to Huxingtang, a beautiful little pavilion that holds a classic Chinese-style tea house, one of the most famous tea houses in China. Bill Clinton and Queen Elisabeth II stopped here to partake in a cup of tea.

Yu Yuan Garden is located near the City God Temple and means Garden of happines or Garden of peace in Chinese. It was first conceived in 1559 during the Ming Dynasty by Pan Yunduan as a comfort for his father in his old age. The construction was postponed and finished 18 years later in 1577.
The garden was the largest and most prestigious of its era in Shanghai. The original structures were opened to the public in 1961 and declared a national monument in 1982.

It is one amazing place, a small world inside the walls, with a winding maze of pathways, bridges, rockeries, ponds and pavilions.
Quiet and surreal, simple and beautiful, it was like stepping into a fairytale, into a place from your imagination...

After going crazy again buying souvenirs we took a taxi and went to see that famous underground market eveyone is talking about. It is situated right next to the Shanghai Science & Technology Museum.

Nanpu bridge

Shopping being done we took the metro once again and headed back to the hotel, had a great dinner and prepared for a nightflight back to Dubai.
More than 9 hours flight trying to keep my eyes open, working all the time so I don't have time to think how tired and sleepy I am... Speaking of which I should go try to force myself to take a nap before tonights flight to India and back :)

Hope you enjoyed this short walk through a history of one of the most interesting cities I've been to, as much as I did. And hopefully there'll be another one sometime soon because this city has so much to offer and I'm happy I had the opportunity to explore a little bit of it :)

I would say - typically Chinese :)))

By by my 'in love of traveling' readers :D
P.S. Have you already visited and liked my Facebook page Come Fly with me? No? Hurry up then, pics and news are daily updated :))