It was good to have been here at New Year. You realize how much of Shanghai's population is made up of migrant workers who went home for the holiday when you see how many flats are in darkness, nights. And the streets are quiet, just the foreigners and Shanghainese. It reminded me of being in Barcelona in August, it gave a sense of belonging.
And the year really has turned, New Year's day itself was the mildest and sunniest day we've had since I got here in December. This morning, the third day of the year, with a 4% waxing crescent moon, it's lovely and sunny and mild and I've not put the wee electric bar fire on for once. I'm going to check out the flower market at the end of Wanhangdu Road, see if there are plant pots and compost for the herb seeds I brought from Scotland.
A previous occupant of the flat had left a load of twigs, over a yard long, tied to a pipe in the utility room. One's a woody, a bit like birch, and the rest are green and sticky. No idea what they are, but the seem viable, so I've put them in a big vase in behopes they'll spring into life, this weather.