Tag Archives: Shikumen

Life in the slow lane, part 2

8 Maj

So. What did I mean when I wrote that everybody is actually not sad that these old lanes with shikumen houses are disappearing, giving way for glitzy new high rises? Well, according to Gangfeng Wang, this makes everybody happy. As you can see from the pics below, the houses are often in a deplorable state. The people who live here get monetary compensation for leaving, and they will end up in modern apartments. The developer of course will make a lot of money from the new development, and the government will also get money – from the developer. ”The only people who are not happy are the tourists”, Gangfeng Wang told us.

Entrance to somebody’s kitchen.

This absolutely charming old lady showed us the correct way to wook green beans.

Electricity meters. Up to twelve families might live in one house, and every family has a meter of their own.

Every family has their own water faucet too.

Why not pimp your water faucet?

Not everybody has washing machines.

A bathroom, never renovated.

Me thinks Kitty needs a good scrubbing too.

Shoes being aired outside the kitchen window.

By the way, every family has their own light bulb.

Kitty seeking shelter on a hot day.

So does Kitty’s master.

Quaint stilleben with spittoon. I think it is a spittoon, anyway.

The beauty that once was…

…and still is.

Life in the slow lane, part 1

1 Maj

Yesterday, me and about 15 other expats went on a walk through some of the old lanes of Shanghai, accompanied by the photographer Gangfeng Wang, who grew up in the area.

The arcitechtural style of the residential houses here is called Shikumen, a unique Chinese-Western mix that only exists in Shanghai. The houses were built for Chinese people who lived in the Western quarters.

The deteriorating Shikumen lanes are being rapidly torn down now. High rises are sprucing up instead. ”What a pity”, we said to each other when we walked through this negihbourhood. But is it? Well, I will ask that question again in Life in the slow lane, part 2.…coming soon….

View from a rooftop terrace

Shaving corner with a view

Looks pretty idyllic, doesn’t it?

The perfect match, I think

On the side

Playtime – for some

Peeking through someone’s door

Shoes drying in the sun

Birdcages en masse

My best photo ever!!!

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