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Monday, July 18, 2011

Chinese-Style Yard Sale

Parks are where people hangout here in Shanghai. Families go there to relax on the weekends, engaged couples go there to take wedding photos, middle-aged men & women gather there in the evenings to dance the cha-cha or the waltz. Parks are bustling hubs of social life.

As I was walking around near the center of the city over the weekend, I stumbled upon what I might call a bird market. There were all manner of little tweeters for sale in handmade bamboo cages. Along side the bird sellers, men were selling wiggly worms by the kilo - bird feed.

But birds weren't the only attraction. The sidewalks were lined with cloths covered with all manner of mostly second-hand goods - from shoes to knives to tiny little teapots. Several of the vendors had one-of-a-kind items - a tibetan bowl, a wooden cricket cage, a porcelain figure painted in blue. It was the closest thing to an American yard sale I've ever seen in China.

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