The train journey to Hangzhou was good - a new train and quite quick - so quick that we could have done with it taking a couple of hours more to catch up on sleep. We ran the gauntlet of rapacious taxi drivers and eventually persuaded one to take us to the hotel arriving at 7:30.a.m. It was in a quiet street just off West Lake - Hangzhou's main attraction. The place was next to a school and all the kids were flocking in for their pre-school activities. One of these was a marching band - it was good but we hoped that they didn't do this every morning at 7:30. After sorting ourselves out and breakfast, we hired a couple of bikes and were off round the lake. The lake is about 9 miles in circumference but is split by a n umber of causeways which lead into little islands so we went quite a way. I seemed to be pedalling furiously but getting nowhere - I put this down to a wonky bike. Fran pedals round with no apparent effort - she has just read the Lance Armstrong biography and is obviously inspired. All of the islands on the lake seemed to have a little garden and pavilion. It made for some lovely scenery and views - the Chinese love their rock gardens with pools and weeping willow trees . We attracted the attention of a Chinese policeman, we had taken our bikes down a pedestrian area - difficult with the signs in Chinese. We visited the 13th century pagoda next to our hotel. It looked very impressive until we found out is was re-built 2 years ago and all that is left of the original structure is the foundations. The new building is a steel tower complete with lifts!We had trouble finding a place for dinner where we could understand the menu or waitress. The meal would have been great if the chicken wasn't just bones with chilli and garlic, the rice hadn't arrived when we had finished, the beer wasn't luke warm and the aubergine swimming in soy sauce.