perjantai 30. tammikuuta 2009

Spring Festival






Spring Festival, aka Chinese New Year, is just about over. The actual period continues couple of weeks, but holiday is over. Personally, I associate the word "festival" to a... well, festival. People dancing on the streets, music playing, loads of people and things going on all over the place. But nooooo, Chinese spent the spring festival with their families, and Shanghai was, if not dead, at least in a coma for the most important days of the Spring Festival. Most restaurants were closed three or four days and streets were pretty empty. Chinese went to see their families (millions and millions of people living in Shanghai are not Shanghainese) and as I mentioned earlier, most expat flew to some nice, sunny place. Or to their home country. And we stayd here. I am bitter, I am not even saying otherwise.


Everyone has propably heard about Chinese New Year and fire crackers. You can hardly mention the first without the second. Before the festival we got a note that stated it is ILLEGAL to fire a piece of wirework or a firecracker in the city. Now really? Based on the ridiculous amount of those whizzling, banging, fizzing, sputtering thingies flying around, I really doubt anyone was enforcing that piece of legislation.


It was not just one night and it sure as hell (pardon my french) wasn't just firecrackers! It has been SEVEN days and seven nights in a row, and it has been like a war! I kid you not! Of course not as scary, but the noise is amazing!




It started on Sunday week ago (Monday was the first day of the Year of the Ox) and it is still not over after one week. It has been gradually decreasing, though. For example on Thursday night they already started pretty late, around 8 pm, and stopped in about 2 am. Only to start again around 9 am on Friday morning: fire crackers in loooong chains, and constant fire works against the buildings. In the midst of all the buildings the "bangs" and "booms" echo like you wouldn't believe it. The purpose of the fireworks is to evict or drive out the evil spirits. If they have ANY sense, they are long gone by now...




Sorry, there are no good pictures of this madness, but see the video anyway.


video



Please note the smoke between the buildings. And do put the sounds on: the constant "background noise" is the bombs (firworks, it is) exploding. The loudness does not quite get through via the video...

3 kommenttia:

雨中圆舞曲 kirjoitti...

Haha, I tell you what. The reason for Thursday's firecrackers is that Shanghainese wish to welcome the God of Money.

Tarja kirjoitti...

Tajuton pauke! Paljon pahempi kuin meilla Pudongin puolella...

Eeva kirjoitti...

Oh, I did not know that! But I welcome most warmly the God of Money, too!

Sitten taisivat nämä XuJiaHuilaiset houkutella kyseisen raha-jumalan tänne meille päin ja pois Pudongista ;o)