Peppa Pig To The Rescue

It’s been two weeks since the implementation of Shanghai’s new garbage sorting regulations and so far we’ve had a number of companies, garbage collection points and residents getting fined for not sorting their trash correctly. We’ve also had lots of arguments and one reported case of a garbage regulation volunteer being attacked and choked for reprimanding a resident.

You may have some difficulties too because some of the regulations are not too clear and from what I’ve heard, are already being reviewed by the authorities. However, in order to simplify the rules for kids, we’ve had Peppa Pig come to the rescue!

Helpful Peppa Pig (Image source, That’s Shanghai)

Helpful Peppa Pig (Image source, That’s Shanghai)

Food Waste; Can Peppa Pig eat it? Residual Waste; Would Peppa Pig want to eat it? Hazardous Waste; Would Peppa Pig die if she ate it? Recyclable Waste; Can Peppa Pig make money from it? These four simple questions actually help me!!! hihihi

Hunchbacks of Our Time

When I commute to my various activities each day, all I see around me is everyone's eyes glued to their devices. I'm sure it's not happnening only here in Shanghai but in most countries and cities.

99% of train commuters are staring at their devices, people drive while looking at phones in their hands, scooter riders staring at their phones and people walking while staring at their phones. All this screentime while moving about in sometimes dangerous situations makes me cringe. It'll be very interesting to find out how many accidents occur on a daily basis due to 'not paying attention to what you're doing because you were staring at your phone'.

Can’t get enough.

Can’t get enough.

I was coincidently walking behind the girl above for about two blocks towards the subway station. She was staring at her phone the entire time without a clue as to what was happening around her, she crossed the road while still staring at her phone! If we would have been anywhere else but in Shanghai, with all the CCTV cameras, it would have been super simple to mug her and run off without her even reacting. I overtook her on the sidewalk as it was really annoying being stuck behind her lacklustre walking in narrow laneways. I then saw her come down the stairs at the subway station and immediately plopped herself down to stare at her phone some more. This moving with blinkers on evokes a sense of sadness in me to see how cut-off we poeple have become from one another and our surroundings.

The hunchback generation.

The hunchback generation.

I went to take a seat to wait for my friend and saw these three. They look like they’re asleep or something like that but no they were not asleep, they were just on their phones. Gone are the days of drumming up casual conversations with strangers or even just acknowledging the people in your vicinity. On more than the one occasion, I’ve noticed how people would not be able to describe the person sitting next to them other than it was a man or a woman. But to give a useful description of a person would be impossible for many.

I hope we are able to recognise how regressed this all is and make a real conscious effort to engage with those around us; even a little eye contact with a nod of acknowledgement would be a step forward (or backwards to the ‘good old days’).

Is Chivalry A Dying Trait?

Over the course of the last few years in China, I have been observing a disheartening trend. At the beginning it wasn't so prevalent among Shanghai's inhabitants but since the beginning of this year, it's been very clear that it's accepted as the norm.

What I'm talking about is that I have noticed that among foreign (mainly caucasian) men in Shanghai, it seems that men are not expected to be chivalrous anymore. Now there's a catch; when I am with Christoph, he always opens the door for me or any woman in our vicinity,or helps me and other ladies with our bags etc. And when we're together, the other caucasian man would open doors etc. However, when I'm not with Christoph, I'm just one among many Chinese women in the city. So with this appearance, I have been pushed aside by caucasian men while walking or lining up and when doors are open, the men go through first without a glance in my direction. Only when I open the door will they allow me to go first!

My thinking may seem very old fashioned and, yes, women have long demanded equality but that doesn't mean we want to be treated like the next bloke on the street. Chinese men have been gradually learning gentlemanly behaviour from their western counterparts to where I have seen an increase over the years of their chivalrous actions (well, they kind of go overboard with carrying handbags for their ladies though). On the other hand, instances of chivalry in western men has definitely declined!

The funny thing is that I only experience this in China :-( Is it a switch that men turn off the moment they land on Chinese soil? I know that the Chinese can be loud and chaotic, but most are trying to behave better. Even I have to push and shove sometimes but it's coming to a point where I'm more chivalrous than the white dudes around me!