For the holiday season, there's a nice break given my wife by her school and that means heading home for the holidays:
A flurry of shoppers, wrapped packages in arms, jostling, bumping and careening off each other in crowded aisles.
The kiosks that pop up in the malls offering those last minute stocking stuffers and unique products.
Other "Christmas" special kiosks with tons of decorations, much of which you wonder how the ideas for something new just keep coming and coming.
Christmas season music in the background, especially over and over and over hearing "Rudolph" and "I Dream Of A White Christmas".
Street trees turned into light shows all aglisten with every shape of lightbulb imaginable.
Store clerks wearing their best Santa hat and festooning themselves with garland, and glitter in their hair.
Kids getting their picture taken with Santa Claus lined up and waiting to whisper that special gift only the jolly old elf can deliver.
Oh you thought all of that is in Oregon? NOPE...this is what I saw last night in downtown Shanghai and I'm still shaking my head in wonderment. What an unexpected early Christmas present I got.
Now if it would only snow in Shanghai before I head home.