Shanghai Spring!

Spring has sprung in Shanghai!  And about time thank you very much.  While we didn’t get any snow, it’s been a long, dark winter.  I’m tired of trudging through the gloomy cold to work and looking forward to some sun and longer daylight hours to enjoy exploring all that China has to offer.  We’ll be in Beijing alot so looking forward to getting to know that city quite well.

Trying to name the "captains" pictured-got Captain Crunch right!
Trying to name the “captains” pictured-got Captain Crunch right!

We had a blast at Trivia Night at The Bookworm in Sanlitun this week and will definitely go back.  We killed in many categories but the music was a bit too international for our brains.  We hadn’t even heard many of the songs or artists featured.  Of course, Thom was overly generous when he gave one team credit for naming Bruno Mars’ song, Gorilla, when he put down “f*&k the monkey”, a loose interpretation of the lyrics of that crazy tune.  Trivia Nights are all the rage in China for Expat’s–this one was even smoke-free!

The ponchos come out when it rains!
The ponchos come out when it rains!

Rain + Spring = GREEN!  The newly revived grass and trees were a welcome sight amidst the grey polluted skies today in Shanghai.  Oh what I wouldn’t give for a blue sky day!!!  I worked the past week in Beijing, where it was 200+ AQI every day and so depressing.  You could tell Michelle Obama and the girls had gone–fire up the furnaces and let the pollutants loose ’cause the liberals have left the building!

Enjoying my new patio chairs from Ikea on our balcony.
Enjoying my new patio chairs from Ikea on our balcony.

No matter, even though there are very few days to enjoy the outside air, we braved the crowds at Ikea to grab some patio chairs for our balcony.  While we can’t leave them out every day because they would just get filthy, we are ever hopeful that we will have a few fine days to sip coffee and enjoy a rare day where you can breathe in without coughing.  Look, they’re still white!

If you want to enjoy a clusterf&*k of epic proportions, visit Ikea on a weekend in Shanghai.  HOLY.  HELL.  Get those elbows out and jump into the fray.  There is a steady parade that you just have to join in as people take pictures, nap, use the somewhat clean bathrooms, socialize, eat and do everything BUT buy anything.  Thom and I are veteran Ikea shoppers so we just took off cutting through departments and grabbing what was on the list as quick as possible.  No browsing for us and who could nap with all that noise!  Obviously someone could because the beds were almost all taken-there being no trespass laws here in China.

New Converse for me!
New Converse for me!

We also visited the AP market and haggled for some Converse-like sneakers for me.  Nothing says SPRING like some new shoes.  They take their fashion very seriously here and my casual look is very counter to the ruffles, bows, and frilly look favored by many of the females here.  To each their own!

Spring fashion includes lots of prints and ruffles.
Spring fashion includes lots of prints and ruffles.

Window shopping at the IFC mall, the many boutiques featured beautiful outfits from shoes to hat.  Of course, they are all in size 0-4 so I can look but not buy.  The largest size even in the US Brands like Gap is a small version of a 8.  No more carbs for me!  Some day I would like to buy some local fashion so I’ll just have to get out the duct tape and starve for a few weeks!

We leave in a week to visit the US to work and then get to be with Hannah and Mike as Mia arrives in May.  From her current antics inside, she is already enjoying being active and will no doubt keep her parents very busy from the get go. Put on your track shoes, Hannah and Mike!   We love little Mia already and look forward to her getting to know her Nai Nai,  While I wish we could live closer, the day will come when we are all together.  Until then, Mia will get lots of cute outfits as we plan to spoil her rotten.

Look out blue skies and clean air, here we come!


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