The Restful and The Restless

It has been a comparatively restful week with only two work days, thanks to an extended break for the Qingming Festival (Tomb-sweeping Day). Of course, we had to replace the extra days with working Saturday and Sunday last week, but the rest days were sweet.

I tripped over to M50 on Wednesday evening, and still found something new in spite of my numerous visits there.

The sun easing itself toward the horizon on the west, caught for a split second between two twigs.

Vines creeping up a wall at the Bandu Cafe in M50.

Jingle bells, color bells.

Santa bouncing on pink keyboard, the big red bag on his back ... what's in it? A bride maybe?

On Saturday, I met up with Nick, a new CS friend from the UK and a new resident of Shanghai, at People’s Park. Because he didn’t have a mobile phone yet, we pre-agreed on a randomly chosen exit – Exit 8 – which turned out to be a very peaceful exit at this busy interchange.

While waiting for Nick who was, in his own words, fashionably late, I took in the old brown stone buildings towering over the trees against a clear blue sky. What a glorious day meant to be spent outside, and in parks!

People’s Park on weekends is most famous for its “marriage market” where restless parents line trees and sidewalks with personal ads of their beloved children. On these ads are stated their gender, age, height, qualifications, income and contact information; parents will peruse these ads and take down contact numbers or meet other parents also advertising their children, hoping to find high quality spouses for their usually highly qualified but highly busy children. Needless to say, none of the kids were present.

Nick was highly amused by this sight and was especially struck by the lack of pictures in the ads. I, on the other hand, finally sated my curiosity of experiencing People’s Park’s marriage market after hearing so many stories about it in my year and a half of living in Shanghai (and thankful that my parents would never resort to selling me off this way).

Throngs of parents, brokers and tourists at Shanghai's largest marriage market at People's Park on weekends.

The personal ads. The youngest candidate I could find was born in 1988! What's the hurry?!

We escaped the raucous market onto a little green haven in the back, laid down on the grass and covered ourselves with the warm afternoon sun and bright blue sky.

On the final day of the Qingming (Tomb-sweeping) Festival long weekend, I hit the park near where I lived and doodled, looking forward to Easter, I guess, as I played with the bunny. Not that it's a holiday here in China, but festivals are always good and fun to observe.

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About transez

Design researcher: curious about people, passionate about life.
This entry was posted in art, culture, discovery, friends, Moganshan Road, nature, travel, urban and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Restful and The Restless

  1. emmahevezi says:

    some lovely images here i am shocked to hear about the parents trying to give their children away though! that is crazy! looks like a beautiful day though 🙂
    thankyou for sharing, keep smiling

  2. Pingback: Mari Saturday | a collection of wanton thots in shanghai

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