Shanghai Dreams

Shanghai in transition

Shanghai, China. For me, it’s one the most interesting cities in China. While some neighborhoods have been modernized, just like almost every city in the country, a lot of it remains untouched.

There are neighborhoods like the old French Concession that look much as they did in the 1930s. The buildings are western styled, the streets are wide and leafy. Many of the big old houses that were carved up into muti-family apartments after the revolution in 1949 have been restored to their former glory.

A lot of protests start in Shanghai. The academics there started the protest that eventually traveled to Beijing and became the protest in Tiananmen Square that lead to the massacre on June 4, 1989. The Chinese government is still trying to deny that it ever happened.

Protests started again in Shanghai this year and traveled to almost every major city in the country. The people were tired of being in total lock down every time somebody sneezed.

So, they hit the streets. The Chinese government could not control the people. A few days ago the government stood down, changed their draconian rules and started cleaning the streets as the citizens moved around fairly freely.

There are a couple of things to take away from these two stories.

Shanghai people are tough. They’ve survived the western partitioning of their city. They survived Japanese occupation during World II all the while harboring Jewish evacuees from Europe.

There is something that many people in the west do not know. The Mayor of Shanghai is almost as powerful as the Premier of China. Typically, the mayor is a lot more moderate.

The picture.

It started out as a photograph that I made while exploring a neighborhood in transition. You can see the tall, modern building way in the background in contrast to the more typical 1930s buildings in the foreground.

While I was tinkering with it I stumbled onto an app that turned photographs into something that approximates a watercolor. Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of controls so you kind of get what you get.

Sort of like life.



9 responses to “Shanghai Dreams”

  1. rothpoetry Avatar

    A great story and a great photo, Ray! I really like the dream-like quality of your photo creation. Yes, in life we get what we get. It is up to us to make the most of it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ray Laskowitz Avatar

      Thank you. I booked a hotel that i had never used in the past so I walked down that street until finally I saw the picture. Sometimes it take a while…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. rothpoetry Avatar

        It is great when the shot comes together and works!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ray Laskowitz Avatar

        I usually force them a little bit.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. allentimphotos2 Avatar

    Shanghai is a fascinating city.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ray Laskowitz Avatar

      I lived there for a year.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. allentimphotos2 Avatar

        I was only there a week staying with a family that we knew in Taiwan. I still had time to get out and walk parts of the city.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ray Laskowitz Avatar

        I spent a year teaching journalism as a foreign expert and working for the late great UPI as an on loan staffer.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. allentimphotos2 Avatar

        Living in a foreign country really gives you a perspective on your home country that most do not have.


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