A Travellerspoint blog

"Eco" park and crappy amusement park

sunny 20 °F

In the morning, Claire invited me out to have some breakfast. She bought me some rice balls stuffed with very young bamboo. She said that they only made them in Suzhou and that this was the only time of year you could get them, so who am I to turn an invitation like that down?

She had mentioned that she wanted to go to this "Eco" park with her dog so I told her I would check it out and it was definitely not "eco-friendly" to anything or anyone. First thing weird I saw was this "activity" for kids. You could pay to chase chickens around. If you zoom in on that photo the chicken is wearing a leather jacket with brass knuckles that say "FREE RANGE". Alright.... lost in translation I think... There were no children participating at the moment, so I don't have any evidence of this happening.

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There was also a military course to try. I saw some college students chanting and marching around, preparing to battle it out on this course, but I didn't stick around to see whose side won.
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Then the most amazing sight at this place, was this gigantic former swimming pool, complete with slides and dance party lights that haven't been taken down yet. I suppose the price of the maintenance of the pool was too much for the owners, so they went with a re-branding. They stopped pouring chlorine in and stocked the place up with fish. They gave kids waders and charged them to wade around and try and catch fish. Brilliant.
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Then there was a climbing area that seemed fun enough, but I mean, I was still feeling it in my knee so I didn't chance climbing up on any of these things.
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I didn't spend much time there, and so I went a few kilometres down the road to Suzhou Dreamland, a really rundown amusement park, which reminded me of Fantasy Island.
I waited an hour in line to ride this strange contraption, that included a water gun. The only goal for riders was to shoot at the statues in the middle. What happened if you shot at the statues? Absolutely nothing, you just shot water at statues.
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I rode on this carousel, which was very loud and vibrated a lot more than seemed normal.
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This ferris wheel was tall, but not as tall as the one in Wuxi.
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On top of those rides, there were bumper cars which I waited for more than an hour because so many people were cutting in line. Finally I had enough and I started blocking people. One guy even called me a "big bitch" and told me to go "back to my country". I said yeah no problem i'm lucky, I'm on vacation and I can, unlike you who are stuck here on these crappy bumper cars in Jiangsu province, drinking up Shanghai's backwater.

That night, I went back to the hostel and met Peter and Lara an English couple who were on a six month adventure all around Asia. Peter was a business journalist and Lara was a treasury department policy wonk. They were fun and I always get a little too excited to speak English to people, so I probably dominated the conversation all night, but oh well.

Posted by baixing 07:38 Archived in China

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Comments

I think I would have been more scared to ride this ferris wheel at a run down amusement part instead of that huge one you went in the other weekend.

by Marian Brown

The mechanical pony ride looks fun!

by Tom McDowell

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