Gas maskers and hooker cards, both standard issue in Shanghai hotels.
Shanghai as a town is cool as shit. Not the banker douchebag hangout I thought it’d be. I think you can judge the livability of an Asian city by the amount of laundry you see hanging about. Shanghai has a lot of laundry. What this means in practice is that Shanghai issues many classes of shares. There are a lot of different type of people there, which makes for a vibrant ville.
For example, Shanghai has a good share of skyscrapers, but also people flying kites right under them. Despite the commercialization, it is on the whole a low city. That is, there are a lot of houses with gardens, two floor buildings, even random kades which selling random cheap crap. Someone living there said in Shanghai developers found it hard to bulldoze and ‘rationalize’ these lower income neighborhoods, whereas in Beijing they just smashed the hutongs. While I understand, the longterm effect is that central Beijing is terrifying and frigid to walk around whereas Shanghai is more chill. I came across no 10-lane roads for example, whereas these are regular in the capital. Note that Beijing around the blue metro line is still the coolest of them all.
Gas Masks And Whores
We stayed at some random Happy Inn in Shanghai. It costs like $40 a night which is OK I guess, for a city. These gas masks above were standard issue, two in each room.
Also standard issue
When we came back that evening someone had stuffed the door with another accessory, these prostitute calling cards. While I suspect the girls in the pictures are not the ones that arrive, Shanghai has no shortage of prostitution, same for China as a whole, as far as I can tell. It’s still illegal and dubious, but in Beijing you regularly get personally hustled by quasi-pimps on the street. In Shanghai I guess they do direct marketing.
Hair Cuts And Hieroglyphics
Glyphs on a barbershop window
These are some photos from a barbershop round the corner. I liked it cause it was one of those 1-perch ramshackle businesses, squatting quasi-legally in an alley, with basically a plug-point and some chairs.
Terrible haircut, great shirt
Unlike Sri Lankan barbershops, however, this one gave me a terrible cut. I dunno if they didn’t understand Indic hair or whatever, but they managed to make a hash of my haircut, which is essentially a number (2) and not that hard to figure out. Nice shirt though.
Internet In Chinese
People in China speak Chinese. English is largely useless and it’s definitely not a language of power. Any expat living there learns Chinese, tho not often the 2,500+ characters it takes to be functional. This is one character I did learn, however, the double XX under a box. It apparently means Internet.