These pictures are from the first week I was in Shenzhen, so this was a while ago. This is one of the beaches of Shenzhen, Da Mei Sha! It is in the Yantian District, on the opposite side of the city from me, so it is quite a hike by bus. The beach itself is beautiful… cleaner than just about any beach I have ever seen in the U.S. It is definitely “Chinafied” though. All over the beach are these 50-foot tall armless, colored angel statues and other assorted and strange Modernist sculptures. The water of the South China Sea I extremely warm and is fairly clear, but probably super polluted. With the 3rd largest port in the world and Hong Kong just around the corner, it’s definitely not pure. Ah well, that’s the norm here. If you are worried about cleanliness, China isn’t your place.
|My buddy Garrett. Lovin' it.|
Also a sight are the Chinese bathing suits! In a strange twist the girls are more covered than the guys, who all wear tight, multi-colored Speedo-esque numbers. The girls’ suits are frilly, dress things that are always the brightest and wackiest combination of colors imaginable. On the beach there are food stands everywhere, including fresh coconuts to drink. For 11 kuai ($1.75 or so), the vendor chops the top off with a machete, stick a straw in, and presto! Your coconut drink is prepared. They also have parasailing which I have yet to try… but soon…
I had an interesting “China moment” while out in the water too. Out from the beach was a line of buoys which we were told was the shark net. I’ve seen these before… it is a long, weighted net that hangs down in the water to keep all the sharks from entering the swimming area. We decided to swim out to it and back, and when we got there, we found that it was just a rope floating in the water. No net. Honestly, I wasn’t even surprised.
|My buddy Adam. Lovin' it with coconut drinks.|
Oh, and I’ve eaten a lot of weird things since my last update, but the weirdest was water snails. Have you ever gone into a creek or lake, and seen the small, black snails with the spiral shells stuck all over the rocks? Well, just imagine that exact same snail, only 3 inches long. They come cooked in their shells, and you have to suck them out with your mouth. You suck on the opening, and this squishy blob comes flying out. Pretty tasteless overall, and not a texture that can be easily enjoyed. I had to eat more than a few because it was at a dinner with my other Chinese teachers and they were watching.