Traveling in China: Exploring Bookstores, Braving the Traffic in Xian

Yesterday, we had some time on our own and I had spotted a book store two blocks away so off three of us went for an adventure. Our guide was fairly leery about our going alone. Finding the store was not the problem. It was getting there across the Chinese intersections that worried her.

Traffic in Xian rev.

The lights, though  modernized to the point that they include the hand icon and the number of seconds a pedestrian has to cross a street, are, as Hue explained, only ‘suggestions;’ there is no guarantee the cars will stop. Nor is it just cars and busses. You have to be on the lookout for scooters, occasional motorcycles, bicycles (both pedaling and electric), and rickshaws. (I was nearly run over by a bicycle one evening when I crossed a street without checking.)

But we did make it and found the bookstore easily. To our surprise, once we were inside, it looked very much like a Barnes and Noble. Very large and categorized much as ours are. Books in English are on the third floor we learned so we took the escalator up. We found a table of books to teach Chinese children English. A rack held a large number of condensed classics in paperback, including Robinhood, Alice in Wonderland, Little Women and Huckleberry Finn.Bookstore I discovered a book to teach English children Chinese that had a CD in it and bought it for my grandchildren. I will be interested in what is on the CD.

Glenda picked up one of the paperback classics and we headed down to the first floor to pay just as if we had been at Borders. Then back to the hotel. Having braved the traffic previously, we approached the experience with bravado, even pausing in the middle of an intersection to video the variety of vehicles approaching us.

Filed under: China, Travel

Tags: Bookstores, Traffic

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