After the Flood

Click HERE or above for home page and info about my novel “Learning to Stutter”


Had a major flood in the apartment two nights ago, and what a kick in the pants it was. A cosmic wake-up call, for certain. I was washing dishes with the headphones on, rocking to Triumph and doing my Rik Emmett impression. That’s why I didn’t hear the pipe burst in the bathroom. By the time I saw the water on the floor, it was probably running for 15-20 minutes. What was I thinking washing the dishes?

I’m leaving Shanghai in less than 4 weeks, but now the end is truly in sight. The apartment has been mostly torn down, and I’m stripping down my possessions – either selling or giving things away.

The flood happened just before 8pm, the closing hour of the maintenance staff. With over 1000 people living in the LQ, you’d think there’d be an emergency staff, but like so many things in China, you have to know who to talk to and how to talk to them — neither one am I qualified to do. My co-workers vanished, and the only person who really helped me was a Chinese woman, a friend of Sheni’s who came to the apartment and helped me talk to the security people who came to help me mop up. The SMIC lesson came through loud and clear – when I needed a support system, where was it? It was nowhere to be found. I got through the crisis just fine, but it left me with no illusions. The only help came in the form of a co-worker who is my student’s dad (who along with his wife gave me a few mops and a 5-gallon jug of water when my water was turned off), and another mom of a student came by to give me a fan and some towels.

So I am letting the floor dry in the empty living room, the slight smell of bleach better than the mold that is sure to creep in here after I check out on June 26th.

But the flood has opened my eyes. And inspired me to get back online again….



Temple Hunting

The past three weekends we have gone temple hunting.  I’ve already posted the Jing’an Temple photos, and here I’ll post the Jade Buddha Temple photos (last weekend) as well as some photos of our meanderings through the (new) Old City and Yu Gardens (this past weekend).  Along the way we hit a mosque, a Buddhist nunnery, and a Taoist shrine.  Not bad for one afternoon.

Exquisite Jade Buddha

Prayer petitions

Feeding the koi pond at Jade Buddha Temple


This past weekend we went to Yu Gardens via the metro, stopping at a few highlights along the way.

Fuyou Road Mosque

Courtyard of the nunnery – we didn’t see/hear any nuns





















But we did see this amazing gilded Buddha with the 384 saints (above, in the dome).

Gilded Buddha – Chenxiangge Nunnery


Then on to the Taoist shrine – Temple of the City God

Sheni at City God Temple Taoist Shrine


Lucky Bell – people place coins on the bell for luck



Yu Gardens, thanks to Sheni for the great photo!

Until the next time!!  Please leave comments and let me know you’ve been here!