We’re in the beginning half of the rainy season here in Shanghai. It seems all of S. China is getting incredible amounts of rain, enough to make traveling in the wilderness a bit dangerous (mudslides, perhaps) and at times even boat traffic has been halted. One of the above-ground subway trains here in Shanghai leaked last week. Yet, in the north, it is dry and people are thirsty.

Although I have been living in a rainy environment for most of the past 10 years, I’m actually enjoying the rain here in Shanghai. It cools and cleans the air, and it comes with thunder and lightning, always a treat for this nature-boy. There is something sublimely pleasurable about walking around in the pouring rain with nothing more than a t-shirt, shorts, sandals, and umbrella. No worries about being zapped by lightning either, wherever I walk I’m surrounded by a thousand tall buildings with lightning rods. These past few days however, the weather has been incredibly hot. 100 degrees F with heavy humidity.

A few weeks ago I took on the class of adult hair stylists which I was told about before moving here, because their regular teacher quit. They were very grateful for the hair styling textbook I gave them (thanks Susan!). I was intending to use it as materiel for English lessons, but they are beginners and the book’s language is far beyond them. Instead we are working on the basics of greeting and asking questions about hair and styling, vocabulary of hair, head, and face, and stylist-to-customer roleplays. Apparently they are happy with my teaching—or maybe the book—they offered me free hair cuts for the rest of the year. 🙂

Yang Mei berry

This is a Yang Mei berry, and when ripe they’re dark purple and delicious. They grow from a tree and are only available in June. They are unusual looking compared to most other fruits, there is no skin and the ‘meat’ grows out of the central pit like long, thin, tightly packed strands.


Lychees are in season as well. The meat is white and a little tart. Not my favorite.

hopeful travelers

The government opened up a small office in a building near where I work. These people are all lined up for an interview to determine if they can be allowed into the USA. Thousands of Chinese are trying to get into the USA every day. I pass the same long line, different people, daily on my way to work. It’s not raining nor will it soon, people use umbrellas to shade from the intense sun.

hauling with a moped

So you think you’re a good rider?! There’s actually a moped underneath all those empty plastic bottles! Oh by the way, there are electric scooters and mopeds everywhere. What a concept.

Jackie Chan laundry detergent

Jackie Chan seems to be quite the national hero…I’ve seen him singing in ‘national day’ commercials and his face is on a variety of products. Always with that boring white shirt and a proud fist in the air.

That’s all for now. Hugs to all and Happy Fourth!