Apparently you can get pearls in my town if you're willing to shuck the oysters yourself. It's not expensive and the haul is worth the time.
If you look foreign, this is what your crowd will likely look like if you do this in our area in Shaoxing.
It takes a bit of time to feel around within each shell for the jewel but it's definitely worth it once you start to see the different varieties you can collect.
The owner will help you out and she's really fast.
All in all it may take about 20 minutes at most for about three oysters. The pearls are far from perfect, but you can still enjoy the process and have a fun souvenir or gift for others.