Almost outta here

We are heading to Guangzhou tomorrow, so not much time tonight… nor did we do too much of note today. But I couldn’t resist posting this picture of Cole, it’s one of my favorites of the trip so far.

Onto the tip of the day…
Tip #3: If you’re a coffee drinker, at all, bring some from home. Do not expect Chinese coffee to be anything remotely similar to US coffee. You might think you can handle the stuff that is called “coffee” here, but be prepared for something comparable to the consistency of tar. And no amount of half and half and sugar can make it consumable in my book. And believe me, I have tried. We brought some Folger’s Singles from home and they have been a great help during the lull of the afternoon (post nap, that is). I hadn’t brought any before but did at my sister’s insistence and I am so glad I did. If you’re a fancy coffee drinker, you might want to consider bringing a coffee press and your favorite fancy grounds… I don’t think they have coffee grinders in the rooms. There are some Starbucks around, in some airports and in some larger cities. And the coffee there is just as good as the Starbucks back home, as long as you don’t mind paying around $5 US for a cup of plain ol’ joe. And I kinda do, so having the coffee in the room has been great.

On the subject of liquids in China, if you are a diet Coke drinker, prepare to do without it. The Chinese really don’t drink much soda and diet soda is even more scarce. They do have ‘Coke Light’ in GZ and in some bigger stores in many provincial cities, but the taste is just not the same. Regular Coke is available just about everywhere, as is Pepsi, but that’s about it. Lots and lots of bottled water. Lots and lots of hot tea. We brought along some Crystal Light ‘on the go’ type stuff and it’s made the water much more drinkable. That’s saying a lot from someone who can barely stand the stuff.

And on the subject of foodstuffs, don’t bother with dragging a bunch of snacks from home. (Can you tell I had a long nap?? I am on a roll, man!) If you are a very picky eater (and I can assure you, there is none pickier than my beloved sister) you will find plenty to snack on at the local Carre Four type store. Even without being able to read Chinese, you will recognize many American snacks… I’ve noticed that more and more are showing up in stores here. Beyond that there is a huge array of nuts, dried fruits, crackers and yummies… I promise, you’ll be pleasantly surprised if you’re expecting to survive the two weeks on Power Bars and peanut butter. And I can’t speak to all of the provincial cities, but the food in the cities I’ve visited, and the food in Guangzhou is quite good at local restaurants. In GZ, there is a new Italian place that is as good as any upscale Italian restaurant back home. I didn’t think it was possible, but on my last trip here, La Dolce Vita gave Cow and Bridge a run for the title of my favorite restaurant in GZ. And with that, I am certain Cow and Bridge is heaving a huge sigh of relief as we head that way tomorrow. The other popular restaurant on Shamian Island, Lucy’s, isn’t my favorite, but it offers US type cuisine… just a bit on the non-descript side. And, don’t say I didn’t warn you, if you get the cheeseburger at Lucy’s, prepare to have meatloaf on a bun. I’m just sayin’.



  1. That picture is adorable. Have a safe & uneventful trip back.

  2. FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!! Someone who shares my view of Lucy’s.

    I LOVE Cow and Bridge! We didn’t get to try the Italian restaurant when we were there last, but I’ve heard it was excellent.

    Have fun in Guangzhou!


  3. a Tonggu Momma says:

    Love the pic! And we got food poisoning at Lucy’s. Seriously. So… you know… hmm…

    Safe travels!!!!

  4. Ashley and Mike says:

    I am lovin’ the tips. What about mandarin oranges…can you get those there? That was going to be my “healthy” packed food for my picky 4 year old. Oh and a jar of peanut butter :) If you can, do a tip on finding flights. I know that you usually try to find your own flights. We are waiting on TA so I would love any tips!

  5. keep up the ‘postin !!
    great advice for those almost in route!
    Know you will be happy to arrive at “home away from home” aka Guangzhou.
    Happy New Year from across the globe.

  6. Stefanie-
    I just want to eat him up- he’s so darn cute! :) Thanks for posting so many gorgeous pictures.
    It’s fun to travel along with you vicariously.
    Jenny T.

  7. Party of Seven says:

    That Italian restaurant is great, we ate there a couple of times. I love Cow and Bridge too. Lucy’s, well lets just say we ate there once and that was it!!! And we were at the White Swan the whole two weeks!
    Lovin the pics, and that little Cole, boy I could just eat him up!!!

  8. Makanasmom blog says:

    Heck after 9 days in Nanchang last time I was THRILLED to get to Lucy’s, but I certainly don’t reccommend the quesadilla there, salsa seemed to be ketchup with some veggies in it! I don’t remember hating the coffee, and i am from Louisiana and like my coffee!

    We got LOA Monday, so reading your posts makes me feel closer to our son!


  9. Your post today and yesterday just cracks me up. I love the photo of Your sis and Cole from behind. Now, if that were me and you took a behind shot like that of me…well, now…let’s just say you’d be left BEHIND waiting tables at Lucy’s……..meatloaf, anyone?

    (PS…your sis looks as darned good from behind as she does from every other angle…)

  10. The Gang's Momma says:

    Lucy’s was fun for us, more for the novelty of having been there. AND the cheap food. Li’l Empress loved their broccoli and french fries.

    But La Dolce Vita?! Better than our local Italian restaurant here at home. Mmmmmmm. We never made it to Cow and Bridge – the flooding that we experienced kept us in the WS for the day instead.

  11. Rebecca of "China, Baby!" says:

    Are you tellin’ me… ARE YOU TELLIN’ ME… we do not need SNACKS??? OK this conflicts with every other bit of advice I’ve gotten. I just spent like $100 on snacky food in convenience sizes and are you tellin’ me I can buy that in any store in China???? GRRRR.

    PS My word verification is “bearcut”. I just thought that was hilarious.

  12. Rebecca of "China, Baby!" says:

    Thanks for your coffee tip. I forgot to mention that. Andy wants to bring an Aeropress and some ground coffee from home now. :)

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