after she left i video chatted with my parents for an hour. i got ready to leave a bit after 10am, to open up a new bank account so i could transfer my money from the old one to the new one, but began to panic when i couldn't find my US passport anywhere. my immediate thought was somebody had stolen it, either from my bag when i wasn't looking, or right from this room. both cases seemed unlikely, as i remembered having my passport yesterday, and purposely not carrying it with me everywhere and leaving it in the hotel room so it wouldn't get lost. and i don't think the cleaning woman would take it either, as it doesn't have any monetary value, and there are plenty of other more valuable things in the room to pilfer. so that left me with one possibility: that sunmeng accidentally took it when she used my traveling bag. i texted her asking if she could check the bag. a few tense minutes elapsed before she wrote back saying yeah, she found my passport.
i was relieved that my passport wasn't stolen, but it meant postponing opening a new bank account until sunmeng can give it back to me wednesday night.
i went out looking for breakfast. i wanted to eat something light, and knew there were some alleyway bread stands i could find some cheap eats. walking down the southern side of jianxin east road towards guanyinqiao, and came across what appeared to be an outdoor market on zhongye road. despite the road being congested with people on either side, there was also two way traffic passing through. not so much in terms of fresh produce, but at the far end there seemed to be a slaughter house area, selling all sorts of meat. apologizing to my shoes, i took a quick peek, snapped a few photos, disturbed a few butchers and customers, then left. i also snagged a 1 pound bag of longans (RMB6). on guanyinqiao east ring road next to my haiyou hotel, i bought some flat bread (2 for RMB2/piece) from the little roadside bakery on the side of an underground parking garage entrance. the bread was longer than the ones i bought, and had a sweet taste to them. finally, from the corner fancy fruit shop i bought 2 taiwanese wax apples for RMB20, then 2 yogurt drinks from the lawson convenience store next door.
i left the hotel again around 1pm, to give the cleaning crew time to clean the room. 2pm is normally when they go through all the rooms, since that's the checkout time.
i went to go check out the xinhua bookstore on the southern side of jianxin east road. according to online maps, there's supposed to be a bookstore there, and from the signs outside there's supposed to be a bookstore, but when i passed by a few days ago it seems to be out of business, since all the windows were boarded up. but i noticed the doors were opened today, so the least i could do was to investigate. things didn't look good when i went upstairs to where the bookstore was and saw an appliance store. but when i went to the 3rd floor, that's when i finally found it. business must be slow, they've been reduced to just a single floor. despite the language barrier, i spent a good chunk of time in the bookstore. there doesn't seem to be any chongqing city guides (all the publishers from a few years ago seemed to have gone out of business) but there were some general china guides that had some good information on chongqing, although just in chinese. that infor is still helpful though in pointing to me where go to go. later i browsed some different aisles, including natural history (some new regional flower and bird guides) and cooking.
next stop was the chongbai supermarket in the central guanyinqiao area opposite the subway entrances. i was looking for plastic shelves which they didn't have (only food and common household), but they had most of the things i like to eat, which i made a mental note of. i left with some chongqing beef jerky, some pound cake, and a bowl of instant noodles (dinner). feeling in the mood for barbecued squid, i headed to the food corridor section of guanyinqiao. i stopped by a miniso to buy some hand soap, hands can never be so clean in china. i lost my appetite though and decided to go home via the back exit of the paradise walk shopping mall.
i got back by 3pm