Los Angeles vs. Shanghai

 I know, I know. Comparing these two places is like comparing apples to oranges. However, sometimes I make myself take a step back and truly embrace China and all it has to offer. Life is so different here and I see new things on a daily basis. Most of the time I wish I could rewind and NOT see them, but that isn't possible. Embrace them, I will! So here it goes. Los Angeles vs. Shanghai.

In Los Angeles we visit the beautiful zoo. We look at the animals and enjoy seeing them with their friends.

In Shanghai we feed the animals. Anything. We feed the monkeys lollipops and the elephants seaweed snacks. In Shanghai, we also don't read signs. ever. They are mainly just a suggestion. 

In Los Angeles people who want to feel organic go buy their food at what is called a farmers market. It makes you feel good knowing that you are eating fresh food. Look at that table set up. So fancy!

In Shanghai people who want to feel normal go and buy their food on the street. It makes you feel good knowing that you are eating fresh food with everyone else. And that rack of ribs? You can watch them do it for free! Now THAT is fresh. 

In Los Angeles there are millions of markets. This one called "Grand Central Market." It is fun to walk down the aisles looking at all the different food choices. 

In Shanghai we have a pet market. Except these markets are equipped with millions of grasshoppers that are trained to fight. I will repeat. Grasshoppers that are trained to fight. On any Saturday this market can be filled with hundreds of people comparing antenae (?) of their fearless insects. Also, you can get some fresh goldfish. or a turtle. If its still alive. Oh actually, I don't think that one is.

In Los Angeles if you are having a BBQ party you go to the grocery store for some meat. Its packaged so nicely. The labels are easy to read. It is laid out in an organized fashion.

In Shanghai...we don't eat meat. Fish. It's all about the fish. Fresh fish. So fresh they are still swimming (flopping) around in bowls of water. "I need some fish for tonight's dinner. Why don't you scoop me up some of that right there. Yeah. No, that one has a limp fin. The other one." 

In Los Angeles the vending machines are filled with yummy goodness. Cheetos, Ruffles and skittles! One person could stand there for a solid 10 minutes making their difficult decision.

In Shanghai its chicken feet. That'll squash your 3pm snack craving.

In Los Angeles you ride the metro happily with your little baby who is nestled so snuggly in their stroller. In Shanghai you ride the metro with your child in split pants. 

In Los Angeles we celebrate the 4th of July and New Years with sparklers. Oh yay, how fun! These are the best. I love them. They are so pretty. 

In Shanghai we celebrate Chinese New Year with the LOUDEST, most obnoxious, and definitely dangerous fireworks you can get your hands on. (And it is not hard to get your hands on them.)  These are disneyland equivalent fireworks and they are exploding on my sidewalk. There are no rules.

In Los Angeles we enjoy doing yoga under the sun with hundreds of other people.

In Shanghai we catch our own goldfish from a child's blow up pool. This is normal. This is not weird.

In Los Angeles you go to a spa to unwind, enjoy a beautiful setting and get massaged. 

In Shanghai, you go to a Korean spa and lay on jade crystals that poke into your back like nails. Ahhh. So relaxing. 

Once again with the fresh food. Great table layout, Los Angeles. 

In Shanghai you buy your fresh fruit from the man in the van on the corner of Dongchang Lu and Pucheng Lu. He almost always has the sweet bananas. (yes, there are non-sweet bananas.)

In Los Angeles you grocery shop in a clean, organized and well maintained store. All the food is packaged nicely, labeled in English and not moving. 

In Shanghai, you grocery shop in a not so clean store with little to no organization. Not all the food is packaged, definitely not labeled in English, and most likely still moving or swimming.

No explanation.

In Los Angeles you go eat street food that is served out of food trucks. This is so fun! Gourmet grilled cheese, Doughnut holes, crepes and fish tacos! All out of a truck! That is so silly. So amazing. 

In Shanghai you eat street food that is served on someones wheel barrel. This is actually one of my favorite "Chinese breakfast burritos." I am still not exactly sure what is in it. (Probably for the best.) 

In Los Angeles you gaze dreamily at the tigers behind the windows and cages at the zoo. You wish you could hold them and pet them.

In Shanghai you get to cuddle a real life baby tiger, sucka! 

In all reality, this place is very different from home but we are having a blast. Shanghai is absolutely bananas but it sure makes for some great blog posts! 

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