None of the colleagues told me to be prepared for heavy and constant rain falls. My packing list for the hot, humid, and relentless summer sun of Shànghǎi only comprised light summer clothing. Had I known that this would be a wet alate summer I would’ve packed rubber boots. First week, my feet were always wet when commuting to and from work.
The assumption of summer weather was too big and the real rain season would start when I am already gone.
In the first week I never saw the sun. It was hidden behind dust, ozone, or grey rain clouds.
When I was walking the last few hundreds meters on pedestrian walk back home to my apartment at late evening/early night, the sun has already set down somewhere behind the cloudy curtains in the west. However, a sleepless city like Shànghǎi knows no closing hours. In those moments the scene in Shànghǎi reminds me of Ridley Scotts vision of the megacity in Blade Runner. The picture includes heavy rainfall that forms large and smeary puddles on the pavement, neon-flashes from advertising light walls on every second building that light up the crowded streets, street vendors, beggars, honking speeding cars, yelling, shouting, traffic signal flashes, roaring engine noise, people commuting. This is the sci-fi vision of such a megacity that already manifested itself as Shànghǎi. Although, the sugary soft drink advertised in the movie is written in Chinese letters in Shànghǎi . … and of course, the flying cars are missing. 😉
Concerning cars and traffic: The honk is an essential tool and sth. any visitor immediately notices. Cars and especially motorcycles keep going even when there is a red traffic signal. The honk is used to warn others when speeding through streets of Shànghǎi. Even public busses honk to signal that they also use the street and might use it with higher velocity than allowed. Speaking of which, didn’t notice road signs with speed limit except for signs at entrace of hotels saying 5 km. SO FAR noticed no traffic accident.
“People’s Square” – Should be renamed into “People square” – because there are a lot of people 😉 Exactly those pictures you know from crowded pedestrian crossings and crowded metro stations – busiest metro station that I have seen so far … etc. etc.
In the metro, most Chinese will use the escalators instead of the stairs. Good for me because I can accelerate my pace when running up the stairs and avoiding the crowd.
Concerning crowds. Chinese must love crowds – or they found a way to accept them and to live with the overpopulation 😉
Überall Rotzen, Niesen, Husten, Gähnen ohne sich die Hand vor den Mund zu halten.
Andere Länder, andere Sitten, andere Tischmanieren