Monthly Archives: April 2014

Springtime in Shanghai

The weather in the city has been on and off. Blue skies to grey. A bit of sunshine, rain with a dash of pollution. When the air is clear and the sun is shinning, people are outside in masses.

A walk through the city, brings all kinds of experiences to share. Not experiences unique to Shanghai really, I think you could find these in any big city. Shopping, pick-up basketball and people hanging clothes out to dry. Well, maybe not that last one.

And like any city, there’s always a park to explore. People’s Park is located in the heart of the city boardering Shanghai Art Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art. From our apartment to People’s Park and back is about 4 miles. Perfect for an early morning run or a walk on a Sunday afternoon with plenty to see.

Now here’s where things go Square Melon. On Sunday afternoons, a section of People’s Park is known as “Blind Date Corner”, a marriage market where parents of unmarried adults go to find a suitable mate for their child. “Advertising” is posted, marketing their child’s age, height, job, income, family values and of course the Chinese zodiac sign. Parents walk around chatting about their children to see if there is a harmonious fit but only after the posted standards are met.

With the one child policy in China, there is a real fear that by the time a male-child reaches marrying age, there will be a problem finding female mates. There is a study that says by the year 2020 there will be 24 million unmarried men in China unable to find a wife.

Blind Date Corner required further explanation so I asked about it at work. It seems that most “children” do not know their parents are out marketing them and they do not ask permission before posting. One co-worker shared with me that her dad did post her ad and she did meet a couple men from the posting but she had no interest in taking it any further. Her father understood and to her knowledge he stopped shopping. I looked for her picture when we went back the following Sunday.

Springtime brings great events to the city as well. Greg and I went to see the Shanghai Acrobat Troupe. They travel the world performing an amazing show of talents and incredible athleticism.

It’s a great time to be in China. Perfect weather and all the flowers and trees are in bloom. Are you sure?We enjoy going out for dinner and walking back in the cool evening air.

We did have to pause on our way home the other night in front of this sign stating the obvious.

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