Monday, April 6, 2009

He Fang Market Place

Last Sunday Jason and I venturedto He Fang ("Hey-Fong") market place, an area near West Lake, on the west side of Hangzhou, about a 30 minute drive from our hospital. He Fang is a combination of open-air kiosks and strip mall-style shops, about four blocks in length. We happened to hit it during Qingming ("Ching-ming") holiday (aka tomb sweeping days), a three day Memorial day around here.

Jason and I had been planning this trip since we first got here and read about it. Mainly becasue Jason learned they sold swords here and has been drooling about it ever since. So in the interest of a dry floor, we grabbed our favorite driver and negoiator, Jack, and took off. The side shops were way off the ground and not accessible much to me, but wow, were we impressed! Lots of nick-nacks, trinkets and seriously authentic Chinese goods everywhere. It took us two and a half hours to take it all in, with a good deal of that time spent in the sword shop, which Jason learned had been there since 1830, and I swear the proprietor was just as old! I'll not go into what all we purchased because so much of it is a surprise, but we really loaded up thanks to "Cutthroat Jack." The man has amazing negoiator skills, and got everything we wanted for at least half off.

We then returned to Silk Street and cleaned it up good with Jack's help.


  1. What a great day! I'm glad both your colds cleared up enough for you to get out and have some fun before you go back under the two foot long needles to make a strainer of yourself. I want to see more pictures! And Russ, why didn't we hear about you braving Flapping Chicken Foot curry and Poo coffee? You're an old farm boy, you can handle anything! Did you see any of those snack bags of crunchy spider parts yet???

  2. Sounds fun and interesting--glad you got to have an exciting day out! I hope you are bringing the spider crunchies home for Laurie as a gift!

  3. No snack bags of crunchy spider parts for me. Bradley, the father of Holly (optic issue), here with the rest of their family, is eating a traditional Chinese dish after each of his daughter's lumbar injections. He last ate duck head - yes, the entire head, beak, brain and all. He violently regurgitated it! The Poo coffee comes from monkey poo, so I was not about to try it, but Jason loves it! Yuk!

  4. Far be it from me to quibble but if the coffee is pre-digested by civets, isn't that a type of cat-like creature (sort of cat meets mongoose...) Get Jason to get more info--at those prices maybe we could get another kitty and grow some coffee plants and go into business...and Kerry, we are saving the spider crunchy snacks for your next trip north, hate to think of you missing out! Imagine if they had a cheese coating--they'd be like Cheetos, with some weird arachnoidal coating that rubs off on your hands...Poor Russ. Once my sister and I start contributing the quality of your blog does take a nosedive.