This afternoon Scott and Elaine wanted to ride their bikes, so I took them to the playground in our compound. While they rode around I realized that it seems like we were the only ones of our neighbors still in Shanghai. Nobody seemed to be home in the last weekend before Christmas.
For the 30 minutes that we were outside I did not see a single other person. Normally on a Saturday afternoon it’s quite busy with kids running, screaming and playing, but now it was totally silent. We didn’t see any other kids, and not even ayis buying groceries or drivers waiting in cars. Everybody was either on a tropical beach, on the ski slopes in Europe or North America, or back in their home country.
Normally we would also be in a more exotic location, but because Grace and I are working on a project we will stay in China until New Year. It’s actually quite nice to be home in a quiet compound during Christmas. But of course Shanghai is not the best location to be in during the holidays, because Chinese don’t celebrate Christmas (schools and offices are open as usual). But we decided not to leave the compound much over the next days, so we won’t notice that the world outside keeps on turning as usual.