Flying to SFO

Flying to San Francisco again tomorrow. I will be back to Shanghai on Dec 15, Shanghai time. During these 10 days, I will keep blogging but keep in mind that the time of the entries will be offset by 8 hours.


PVGUA 858 05DEC 1345 0810

SFOUA 857 14DEC 1355 1930+1

I hate jet lag, and I know I have to experience it again.

Life is the Accumulation of Mileage

I log into my United Mileage Plus account and found out the following information about my preivous trips from the last year.

6-Dec-04 UA 0876 Q Class NRT to SEA 4,769 0 4,769

11-Dec-04 UA 0938 Q Class SEA to ORD 1,720 0 1,720

13-Dec-04 UA 0648 Q Class ORD to EWR 719 0 719

29-Dec-04 UA 0835 Q Class LGA to PVG 7,382 0 7,382

subtotal December 04 14,590

18-Apr-05 UA 0858 V Class PVG to SFO 6,168 0 6,168

24-Apr-05 UA 0857 V Class SFO to PVG 6,168 0 6,168

subtotal April 05 12,336

What a pity that it does not provide information for me for previous years. Life is accumulation of mileage. I hope I have a precious record of where I am at exactly what date in my entire life.

33 thoughts on “Flying to SFO

  1. Jianshuo,

    I sent an email to your hotmail account 2 days ago but got no reply, hope we can have a talk while you’re in the valley.

    Have a nice trip,


  2. Hi there…is this where I can ask a question or 2 about Shanghai? I live in Taipei (Im Canadian) right now and am planning to move over to Shanghai in a few months. Why does everyone say the cost of living in Shanghai is really expensive? Is it? I visited there before on holiday and found food, transport, beer, everything cheaper than Taipei. But everyone here tells me Shanghai is so expensive. Can you help alleive some worries? I am not an ex-pat high wage earner, more like a parttime english teacher…I get by very comfortably on that in Taipei. Not luxurious but fine. Am i going to have to live in a dump? I hope to find a clean, newer apartment in a convenient area. Do you think im being realistic? How much is it for a chinese tutor, i hope to continue my chinese studies. What is the wage for a native english speaker tutor? thks if you can help me get a feeling on the financial expectations!

  3. xyzah, the version Wangjianshuo prefers would be Taibei, rathen than Taipei – he and his government pretends that Beijing is ruling over the 23 million people in Taiwan, and they dictate the city you are living should be called Taibei.

  4. Famous Shanghai Blogger: Ask Craig how he is handling the government censorship on daily basis, or how Bush administration is harassing him and how he fights back.

    It’s the censorship, stupid!


  5. Famous Shanghai Blogger: Ask Craig how he is handling the government censorship on daily basis, or how Bush administration is harassing him and how he fights back.

    It’s the censorship, stupid!


  6. Famous Shanghai blogger: Ask Craig how he is handling the government censorship on daily basis, or how Bush administration is harassing him and how he fights back.

    It’s the censorship, stupid!


  7. Mr. Wang: We don’t enjoy reading some of the repeated lines above. Would you block him? This is definitely not the right place he should post at.

  8. xyzah,

    I think Jianshuo is on his plane coming over to the valley, so let me answer part of your question here. Hope Jianshuo will not mind. :)

    No, you will not live in a dump. The majority of cost lies in buying a condo + car, but if you are renting and using public transportation, then you are fine. I’m not sure how good your Madrine is, and if you are Asian or not, if your Madrine is good and you’re Asian-looking, then you can live in there as if you’re native. :)

    There are affordable rent places in Shanghai that are near convinent public transportation. For example, search Jianshuo’s blog for “Meilong” to find where he used to live before getting his condo. I used to live in the neighbourhood, it’s not new (10+ years I guess), but very convinent, with bus stops out on the street, Shanghai Metro within walking distance, several supermarkets, banks, ATMs, restaurants, and newspaper stands, and a university nearby. Don’t expect the neighbourhood to be very clean, though.

    I lived in the area for 2 years before I moved to the States, so my info might be a bit out of date, the rent I got for a not-so-good apt was 700RMB, that’s < $100 a month. So if you want to get a newer apt it may double.

    Sorry that I cannot answer your other questions.

  9. Dear bellevue,

    Are you associated with Epoch Times in New York? if so, please spare some space for our normal blogging! Thank you very much!

  10. You mean the time will be offset by 16 hours, right?

    Bellevue would say you had to write 8 instead of 16 due to censorship.

  11. No.

    Wang Jianshuo is determined to lie about China, so I decide to make his job a little bit harder. That’s it.

  12. bellevue,

    Jianshuo is lying about China? You must think the bloggers like us are the inmates of Bellevue Hospital………a psychiatric ward in New York! Is that how you get your call-sign?

  13. omg, enough bellevue … get a frickin life

    as for xyzah, living in Shanghai is not expensive. Then again it depends where you live in Shanghai. Living in the center and other certain areas are more expensive than living in the “out-skirts.”

    Have fun in California Jianshuo, I’m from the San Franciso bay area and can’t wait to visit Shanghai soon!

  14. Thanks, odysseues, I didn’t bring it this time, since I need to make sure I sleep extremely well to get rid of the jet lag.

    Carroll, this time I did bring my license and can rent car and drive. It is so great to drive in the Bay Area.

    eraera, I didn’t check email in hotmail yet. I am afraid I often have to skip a lot of emails into my mailbox due to the large amount of emails I got and the very limited time I have. I have removed my email address from my contact page (if there is some occurance left, please let me know). I would rather encourage people to post as comment, so others may reply, than send email to me, waiting for a reply but I am not able to provide one.

    xyzah, the reason why someone says it is cheap and others say it is expensive is all about the standard. To live the life according to western standard is very expensive. Cars are more expensive than U.S, parking is more expensive and so does many other “not-so-common” equipments. But for normal people’s life, it is not that expensive (although it is the most expensive city in China in terms of food, fruits, transportation). What is the difference? In Shanghai, bus costs 2 RMB, while in Luoyang, bus only cost 0.5 RMB. So Shanghai is more expensive, but if you compare to U.S., the bus (0.2 – 0.3 USD) is cheap… So depending on what kind of life you want to live in Shanghai, it is different. Having said that, I think you will have pretty good life in Shanghai based on your situation. eraera, thanks for answering xyzah’s question. It has been very helpful. So nice to know you also live in Meilong. It is not a fancy place, but I have deep feeling in that area.

  15. Jiang Shou, don’t you dare censor bellevue! Of course you won’t,you’re smart enough not to.. Just wish bellevue would have the courage to expose himself(herself?) honestly then I would know what I was dealing with if I should meet him in the flesh..

    I’m John Brouwer, so there!

  16. thanks so much for the comments….i feel alot better now. We definately will live more asian syle than western style, so should be ok. I will look into Meilong for sure.

  17. oh one more thing…any one have any comments about Pudong? My chinese friends have an apartment there we could possibly rent, the price a little high for me ($5000RMB). Is it worth living there? Can you walk to anywhere you need (groceries, cafe’s, etc) or is it more of a drive a car kind of place? What about another area “Xujiahui” was recommended to me….is that an ok place? anyone know approx rental prices for a newer building (2 bdroom apartment)? thks again! ps, i can speak mandarin but have a western face !

  18. xyzah, also check “tianlin” area. It is also good.

    For Pudong, it is a nice place, but for expats or visitors, I would recommend Puxi, since it is more “Shanghai” style and you will learn more about the culture.

    5000 RMB is an expensive price (just my personal feeling, since expensive or not really depends on the equipment or furniture). With 2000 RMB, you can rent OK apartment (2 bed rooms) and 5000 RMB means really good one. Xujiahui is nice. It is one of the center in Shanghai

  19. thanks JianShuo….its so nice of you to take the time to answer me…always the best to hear it from a local. Maybe will see you around SH one day! Good nite from Taipei/Taibei (ha ha). I wish i was in California at the moment, its getting really cold here now!

  20. xyzah,

    Let me add my two cents your question of if Shanghai is an expensive place to live. I lived in Taipei for six years prior to moving to Shanghai three years ago, so I know what cost of living is like in both cities.

    As Jianshuo already briefly replied to you, it all depends on your standard of living – Where you want to live, the size of the accomandation and amentities of the apartment complex, what and where you would eat, and your life style. In general, living cost in SH is much lower than that in Taipei. Hmmm…I’ll say it’s about one third of the cost. Food costs are definitely lower, perhaps 1/3 to 1/4 of what you would pay in Taipei for similar type of foods in similar type of restaurant.

    Bear in your mind though. You will probably earn less money teaching English here. I did a lot of private tutoring in Taipei while living there. I charged NT1,000(USD30) per hour for one student, or NT$1,200 for two students, I had more requests than I would wanted. I don’t know how much English teachers are paid here, but from reading some forum posts, I gathered that many English teachers condiser themselves lucky if they are paid 100-200 RMB per hour. Therefore, you will likely make far less money here. So, it will be a wash.

    Before you quit your job in Taipei, I suggest that you come out to Shanghai for a visit to check out living conditions and living costs yourself. Do talk to other English teachers here to see what they have to say.

    Other than living expenses, I think you should also take into considerations for other aspects, such as health care facilities, traffic conditions, environment in which you live and work closeby, and people’s mentalities here.

    After you have a chance visiting SH and make comparisons yourself, then I hope you can make the right decision whether to come or not.


  21. Hi Tamie,

    Thanks that is such helpful information. I cant beleive you made that much per hour in Taipei, we’ve been here 2 years and make at the highest $800NT per hour for private tutoring. But its enough, we only work parttime and are fine.

    I came to Shanghai last year and liked it alot. Im glad I lived in Taipei first to have an intro to chinese culture…i think it is more westernized here, so easier to “shi4 ying4”. We visited Shanghai, but that was as tourists, so its always a little different than living there.

    May I ask, what do you do for work in Shanghai? I kind of would like to get different work than english teaching if possible. But teaching of course is always the most accessible at first.

    And do you buy private health insurance? We have an ARC here in Taipei so can be on the gov’t medical plan, which is great. Which company do you buy through for China, if you do?

    thanks so much for the insight, that is a great help! xzyah : )

  22. Xujiahui is a nice place? Only if you enjoy traffic noise as music to your ear. Day and night, period.

    I have a friend relocating to Shanghai and lives in a highrise alongside Caoxibeilu (within Xujiahui area). He couldn’t sleep well for months. He then had his window panes deplexed, quaduplexed, and even adopted active anti-noise equipment. no use. After throwing thousands of dollars after his sleep losses, he gave up and moved to Century Park area(not Centenary Park, sorry Wangjianshuo).

    Another exemple that good or bad can mean very different thing to Wangjianshuo and a normal-thinking guy.

  23. Bellevue,

    Im sorry to tell you that I am definately more inclined to trust WangJianShuo’s opinion than yours. You seem more than a little biased.

  24. Simple. Move to Xujiahui and see (hear) for yourself. If you actually enjoy third-world-country noise, then it’s good for you.

  25. xyzah,

    That was a prompt reply! You must be on line when I sent you the above comment.

    So you did come to SH before and know at least what it looks like – mobs of people for sure. But I must tell you being a tourist on short visit (less than one month I mean) is totally different from living here as a long-term resident.

    Of course, everyone sees things from a differnt perspective. I happen to like very clean neighborhood, which in SH only exists in some remote locations with mostly single-family houses within a gated compound. They are so far fetched you need a car. We didn’t choose to live in those neighborhood mainly because they are inconvenient in spite that we do have a car and a driver.

    For the most part of Shanghai districts, streets are crowded with vehicles, shops, peddlers and people too. And most streets are quite dirty with trash and phlegm. I live in an very nice wide street in Shanghai about one mile west of People Square; nevertheless, our street becomes very littered by the afternoon.

    Plus, the city is terribly air and noise poluted from cars honking and dusts. The traffic seems to be forever in gridlocks except during the wee hours. Yes, I know there are many people here, but if drivers and pedestrians would just obey the traffic signals traffic wouldn’t be so bad. It’s a very disorderly city; many don’t queue, which bother me to hell. I don’t know if you smoke, but two thirds of the male smoke and increasingly more females smoke too, so everywhere you go, indoors or outdoors, we are forced to become second-hand smokers.

    Don’t get me wrong! Not everything is negative, but definitely negatives outweighs the positive. Ecnomically, there are good oppoutunites out there, but you have to be very talented to fetch the good jobs.

    I don’t like telling the locals my feelings toward this city as they might just say why don’t you leave. We moved here because of my husband’s employment, so I have no choice. If the locals would just improve or get rid of the bad habits, SH can be a great city to live in.

    You asked me what I do here. Well, I don’t work anymore cause I travel out of China frequently. Plus, I’m close to my retirement age. I also like to within China. People in some other cities are much nicer and helpful. In Shanghai, if you ask people for street directions, at best you get someone pointing one direction without telling you how many blocks you need to go or where to turn or what some landmarks are.

    If you have determined to come to SH, you should find housing close to transportation (buses or subway lines)as Shanghai is a massive city. Getting around from one part of the city to another can take a long time. And don’t rent a flat long term before you land with a suitable job. Shanghai’s subway system has been expanding in the past few years, but can be extremely crowded. Living close to your work can save you time and aggrevations.

    From your Pingying, I suspect you speak some Manderin, which comes very handy doing business and getting around. Percentage wise, fewer people in SH speak English than those in Taipei.


  26. We spent November in a terrific apt. in Xujiahui. We paid $1900 US/month (about 15700RMB) for a medium luxury place at No. 88, Lane 999, Zhao Jia Bang Lu, close to the Metro and buses, very clean, luxurious.

    has pictures and nightly rates. It isn’t 5* as it says but it is

    very good and we got it for less because the swimming pool isn’t finished. There is traffic noise, but it didn’t bother us even though we’re from a small town. The noise ends late at night.

    We loved Xujiahui Park and the neighborhood. There must be other less luxurious places for less money right around there.

    The Metro is crowded but fast and cheap, riding in cars is scary, air pollution is visually awful but didn’t give us headaches like US pollution does.

  27. doese anyone know how to get a one year visa to China? my babysitter who is german wants to go to China to study chinese for a year, then decide what to do afterward. does anyone know how to get a Visa which is valid at least for a year?

  28. Rachel; You need to let people know where are you living (which country) so people can better answer your question(s).

    I’m living U.S. I can find all the answers for my PRChina visa questions by visiting the web site of a Consulate General of PRC.

  29. We live in Germany and we are americans. my babysitter is german. we are moving to shanghai next year and I offered her to stay with us as an aupair,while she can take some chinese classes too.

  30. Hi, Rachel!

    I took up a Chinese language course with the Shanghai Jiaotong University, School of International Education in 2002. There are a few other universities that provide similar courses for international students. I remember some of the procedure vaguely, but not sure if it has changed since. Your nanny needs to first submit an application to the university (there are some fees involved). Upon receipt of application, the school will send the admission package that she will need for the visa application in Germany. The visa issue at this point is only good for one entry and a limited term (1-3 months). When it’s close to expiration date, the student will go to the school administration office to get the appropriate form for a visa renewal. The visa is usually termed with the course semester. At that time, they did not issue one-year visa for students, but again I don’t know if this has changed. Check out the school website for more information: I like this school for it’s location (Xujiahui district – in town) and the school has many years of experience in international education. Hope this helps!

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