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Shanghai is a fascinating place.
Not just for the culture and the energy, but for the people who walk around the streets.
The W+K office is in the French Concession part of town.
It’s a mad, bustling area … where poncey cafes and overpriced hairdressers rub shoulders with frog soup restaurants, dodgy bars and street sellers flogging everything from insects, pirate DVD’s and the cheapest [financially and metaphorically] fake products you’ve ever seen in your life.
Maybe that’s why the pavements around are offices are littered with colourful characters.
In just the last week I have seen the following:
1. People walking around in their pyjamas.
2. A man in surgeon’s gear, on a bike, smoking with a cape flapping behind him.
3. A man having a coffee outside at a cafe, with a real, live hawk attached to his arm.
4. A crowd of people gathered around a tortoise that was wearing a bow.
5. Three elderly women walking backwards flapping their arms around.
6. A woman pulling a huge and heavy cart with a man fast asleep in the back of it.
And you know what’s weird, only the man with the bird on his arm made me raise my eyebrows!!!
Seriously, the sort of human behaviour that result in most cities in the World calling their Armed Response Police Squads to sort out, has become my normality in just over a year.
Now the thing is, I love it.
I love the madness, the craziness, the unexpected … I love it all … but it still sort of peeves me when some pyjama wearing pensioner, walking backwards with a bird of prey on one arm and a tortoise in a bow on the other – while pulling a heavy wooden cart with a load of drunken men in it – looks at me like I’M the one who has escaped the lunatic asylum just because I’m still wearing Birkenstocks when the weather is no longer so hot that even your sweat, sweats.
Hell, I know this city will make me wear shoes at some point – even if it’s [hopefully] for just a couple of days – so I just hope that till then, we can come to some sort of truce where I won’t mention their FUCKINGINSANEOUTDOORCLOTHINGANDBEHAVIOURALHABITS and they turn a blind eye to my FUCKINGINSANEOUTDOORCHOICEOFSHOES.
Thank you, I feel much better now.
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