Friday, May 28, 2010

Getting My Bearings

Central Shanghai can be roughly divided into two halves split by the Huangpu River.Puxi, to the west of the river, contains the historic areas of the city with the Bund and the French Concession as well as other districts such as the Old Town and Peoples Square area which is the geographic centre of modern day Shanghai.
To the east of the river is Pudong,the ultramodern face of Shanghai, with the garish Oriental Pearl Tower and the Lujiazui Finance and Trade Zone with the Jinmao Tower and the Shanghai World Finance Centre towering over the area.
In the picture above a paddle steamer makes its way down the Huangpu river through the haze.This shot is looking towards the Pudong side of the river.

One of the first things I had to consider was which side of the Huangpu I would live on.There are more oppurtunities for cheaper accomodation and better shopping and other facilities on the Puxi side as opposed to Pudong.Theres also commuting time to be taken into account.Where you work obviously is an important consideration.Do you really want to face an hour subway commute after work or be able to walk home in ten minutes?
If you live in Pudong which lacks the bars and restaurants of the Puxi districts one must note the time of the last subway or alternatively pay for a taxi back home over the river after a meal or beer.

The Huangpu River regularly has ocean going tankers and ocean liners moving at a stately pace studiously avoiding the other river craft such as barges and tourist boats zipping about them.Last week,one of New Zealands two frigates Te Kahu was in port.It was part of the ships current tour and was in town for six or so days.The ship was anchored on the west or Bund side of the Hangpu River.The grey atmosphere which was a combination of sea fog and Shanghai's smog provided the perfect camouflage for the ship. Unfortunately grey smoggy days that obscure the views and make taking photos problematic are all too common here.Im still trying to work out things like exposure times and lenses to get the best shots possible given the conditions.

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