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3 Days of Mourning

Monday, May 19th, 2:28pm: Our company broadcasting system alerted us that it was time to begin. 3 minutes of silence to remember the victims of the Sichuan earthquake exactly 1 week ago. Heads bowed, I began picturing other offices where this was taking place all across the country. Meeting rooms of executives or factory workers, all pausing in their place to hold those lost in the devastation in thought.

Many are mourning the losses in different ways (newest count puts the number dead at over 40,000 with 5 million still missing…). Some of China’s largest web portals such as Sina and Baidu, have made their usually colorful pages black and white for the 3 days (if you’re quick you can still see them).

An inordinate amount of variety shows have been dedicated to the effects of the quake. If I remember correctly, I saw about 6 channels playing the same program. And the others? Well, they were live coverage of the aftermath.

One of my favorite English journals comes from the director of Care For Children, who had just gone to Sichuan to visit many of the welfare centers that have been damaged during the quake. Search for Care for Children in Facebook to find the blog.

It’s hard to say whether the quakes have subsided. A quick glance at the Earthquake Hazards Program shows that Gansu has also seen a handful of tremors, tho none over 6 on the Richter scale. Friends have already sent our requests for tents to be provided for those suddenly homeless in that region.

I think I’m going to to take a long walk now….

More pics here:

Sichuan Earthquake..Whatever it Takes…

Sichuan earthquake
Picture from

I received a bunch of emails and FB messages over the last couple of days asking me whether I’m alright. Thankfully nothing has happened over here in Shanghai, with the exception of a few large building swaying during the Monday quake (Thank you for your concern!). Actually quite a few buildings were evacuated people, which was probably a wise thing as there’s no knowing whether there could have been aftershocks, etc.

However, not enough can be said about the Sichuan area, where rescue efforts are still underway. Continue reading

May Holidays shortened, but not without its craziness…

May holidays is upon us here in China again, but it’s not without its craziness. With the shortened holidays lots of people won’t be traveling as long, but it doesn’t mean they won’t be traveling. I think a lot of us here are expecting a lot of tourists to come into town and generally making the already crowded shopping and tourist areas, well, more crowded.

This May holiday will be even more interesting with the ongoing protests that many locals are supporting against France and, unfortunately, in turn, our regular French-based shopping paradise (for families), Carrefour. If you’ve read some of the latest news articles (here or here), it seems that a lot of people are planning on not shopping at Carrefour over the holidays to make their statement.
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