We just took a family vacation to China, and I thought that some Eye readers might enjoy seeing some of our photos of "City Comforts" around Shanghai, particularly those you won't find in Middletown. We were there mainly to see the World Expo, but also travelled around a bit.
Hope you enjoy the photos!
The Chinese are serious about their umbrellas - both for rain and for sun-shade. Several buildings have secure umbrella "parking". I think the doorman kept track of the keys...
STARBUCKS REALLY IS TAKING OVER THE WORLD
Although I rarely visit Starbucks in America, I am powerless to resist them here in China, since Klekolo has yet to open a Shanghai branch. I am thrilled to find that I can have an Iced Soy Latte to combat the Shanghai heat at Starbucks all over the city.
GREEN IS GOOD
The Expo is serious about pushing the sustainability message. Although almost all of the pavilions are running significant levels of air-conditioning, they don't want you worrying about global warming. These demonstration units are scattered throughout the campus:
REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
Don't waste your trash in Shanghai. There are an amazing assortment of trash sorters.
It's not just a trash bin, it's a solar-powered wayfinding system that locates all the neighborhood public toilets!
At the airport...(note that they specify how to recycle your umbrella when it breaks!)
at a historic temple...
Please divide your trash into "Organic" and "Inorganic":
Even without a garbage can in sight, you'll find signs reminding you to sort your trash!
DON'T BOTHER TIPPING...
At the airport, good customer service should be rewarded by pushing a button. This machine sits on the immigration inspector's desk. Push a button to rate their service to you. Coincidentally, Tenzin is reading "Grounded", a travelogue that Matt Niland just gave me, and the author saw these same machines and posed the question: if I push "bad service", do I wind up in some immigrant holding cell?
SHANGHAI DOES ORGANIC
In addition to the endless number of McDonalds that we patronized (sigh), we also dined at this locavore, hi-design organic restaurant
This is Tofu-veggie Casserole:
LOOKING DOWN IS BIG
If you are lost in Shanghai, look down. Someone has probably put some arrows on the ground, telling you where to go. In upscale spots, the arrows are illuminated and can be reversed depending on the flow. No one seems to be listening to these arrows, but they are there.
The EXPO entrance is over there:
Stand to the side and let other people exit the train, before you get on:
Baggage check is that way (quick, other way!):
BUS STOPS CAN BE FUN
SUPERHIGHWAYS AREN'T JUST FOR CARS
This elevated walkway -- under the big road -- keeps pedestrians in the shade.
FLOWER POTS & BENCHES
Here are a few of the interesting ways that the EXPO brightens up dull corners.
A screen of flower pots in lattice:
here's a closeup of that...
Planters bunched up look so much nicer!
Yin and yang benches...from a distance:
EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED
Green tea donuts...
WHAT ON EARTH IS THIS?
Often, in China, we have no idea what is going on. Our hypothesis about this subway-level vending machine is that it is a convenient way to pre-order your takeout dinner on your way out of the station. You can swipe your credit card and there's a KFC logo among the others. But other guesses are welcome!