First Day in Shanghai
Well, not exactly true. I was here on a summer program in 2002. Yet today was the first day in Shanghai in quite a few years. And I am moving here… now.
Initial Observations / Comparison Between Shanghai and Shenzhen:
Pudong, Shanghai is cleaner than Shenzhen overall
(I wrote this with a narrow impression of the nicer parts of Pudong. What can be said is that the nicest parts of Pudong are far cleaner than the nicest parts of Shenzhen)
- Both are crowded
People are more aggressive (in terms of running into you) in Shenzhen– This was an incorrect initial observation. It’s true mostly outside, but decidedly not so in subways, buses, etc. Pudong is the most modern area I have been to in mainland China– This was incorrect because it was based on an observation of a small part of Pudong (where most of the government offices are concentrated, around ç§‘æŠ€é¦†)
- People look much more alike, or homogeneous, in Shanghai. Shenzhen is more of a people-from-all-of-China city, albeit with a large amount of people from Guangdong province.
- Real estate in Shanghai is insane. Shenzhen tops out at 8,000 or 9,000 per square meter in the nicer areas, while Shanghai seems to be around 13,000 per square meter in very average areas – with the nicest going for well over 100,000 RMB per square foot.
- People stare MUCH less in Shanghai, actually I really didn’t notice anyone staring at me today, whereas in Shenzhen it is constant in crowded areas.
I am Guangdong People
More about #5: I saw a person who was obviously from Guangdong today, and felt a strange kinship… like I am also from Southern China or something. Perhaps I am, having lived there for 2 1/2 years. To be honest, I am missing Shenzhen only now that I am in Shanghai. Strange, isn’t it? I almost want to turn around and go back “home”.
More about #6: A native (read: Shanghainese) taxi driver told me that housing prices in Shanghai have gone up 150-300% from their lows around 1996. She told me the story of a place downstairs from her mom’s place that went for 110,000 RMB in 1996 and recently sold for 480,000 RMB. Whew… talk about speculation. This, along with the ridiculous square meter price of tons of housing in Pudong, a fairly large portion of which are unoccupied, kind of shouts out that housing prices in China are due to fall, and soon. In fact, in Shanghai they have already started to drop.
Today I got up at 5:00 AM to make an early morning flight. Time for some sleep to get ready for more apartment hunting tomorrow. Most of my traffic from Google has disappeared after translating the article about McDonald’s Advertising in China, which had a couple of inappropriate words when taken out of context. I have replaced them (the “bad” words), and hope I don’t get largely kicked out of search engines again for such a little thing.