Nora Batty Lives

Saturday, March 22, 2014
Shanghai, Shanghai, China
We didn't update the blog yesterday as our journey from Xian was not exactly exciting. Modern airports, modern plane, plenty of leg room, food, baggage ready when you arrive at the baggage reclaim conveyer belt, exactly how flying should be and a million miles from Ryan Air.

Today we did the touristy things in Shanghai, the waterfront, up a big skyscraper (with a pensioner discount, £10 instead of £15 each!) and watching the beautiful people parading through the shopping area in the sunshine . We cannot get over how well dressed and individualistic the 15-40 year olds are. You never see the same outfit twice, a group of four girls will have completely different outfits on. None seem to be copying a particular fashion, they are all creating their own. Some styles work some don't but that doesn't matter. We did see one girl with fat legs in a miniskirt but on further examination realised she was not Chinese.
One fashion which is in, whether intentional or not is....... wrinkled stockings! Nora Batty your time has come.

One interesting diversion was in the Peoples Park. There were many hundreds of middle aged men and women mingling around lots of A4 posters. At the time we thought they were missing persons adverts as each seemed to have the details of an individual, age, height and sometimes a picture. On returning to the hotel and Google we discovered it is a marriage market, described in Wikipedia as meets Farmers Market. It is the parents who are advertising and many of their offspring do not approve or even know that they are being promoted in this way.

Some of the things we like and take for granted are expensive;
Very small jars of Gold Blend type coffee £6.00
Wine, Jacobs Creek in a restaurant, £20-£60, nowhere has a great range of wine but Jacobs Creek have certainly sown up the market as every place sells it.
Cherries in a supermarket, 75p each (no wonder I was the only one buying them).
From this you can deduce that the Chinese don't drink coffee or wine and probably don't eat cherries. They do however eat a lot of chillies, the majority of meals have had rather more chillies than we would like.

After a fairly busy week we are off to the country tomorrow for a couple of days R&R in a place called Tong Li.... Watch this space for more adventures of Gill and John go East.
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