Lovely things!

Another extremely gloomy, rainy day in Shanghai. Later, I am going to the cinema and out to get dinner (crossing my fingers for Yang’s), but for now I have decided to dedicate a post to a few of the lovely items I have either bought for myself or been very generously given.

The first items are a present I got from some students from a store called Ginger, which I am so grateful for. The wallet is for an iPad (but sadly doesn’t fit mine) and it is one of my favourite things ever, and the eye mask is ideal, especially as I haven’t been well and needed some lie-ins. I can’t even get rid of the bags they came in; too beautiful. I’m so glad the students already know that ‘Sassy Queen’ is appropriate for me!

Next are some gorgeous watercolour postcards I bought in a shop in the Yu Garden bazaar. The Bund skyline is definitely the first image people envisage when they think of Shanghai (or at least, the first thing that comes up if you Google it) so I couldn’t resist these beauties. The post card on the right looks exactly like the many alley ways you pass on a daily basis, which are sometimes a bit scary, but sometimes just enchanting.

In the picture underneath there is a handmade note book from The Master Handmade, another shop in the Yu Garden bazaar. When I get back home, I am going to use this as my photo album/scrap book of my time here.

These next three photos are of some lovely little items I see everyday now. A lucky cat and jade Buddha are household essentials in my opinion – the cat was a birthday gift from the lovely Olivia and Chris, and the Buddha was the first thing I bought in the market I went to in my first week here. I can’t remember what this market was called, but these are the types of items you can find in basically every general market, along with desperate salespeople and countless supplies of fake Ralph Lauren and Michael Kors bags.

The bottom left photo shows two more little gifts I received for my birthday, including “baby chopsticks” as I am not yet a full pro at using normal chopsticks, although I try and use them every time I get dumplings so that I feel like a real local. The last photo is the phone case I bought for my Chinese phone, which I think is hilarious, but I love it as Zootopia is my Shanghai film: it’s about a girl who wants to move far away to the big city to get her dream job even though everyone around her is nervous for her. Plus it was one of the many movies I watched on the plane journey here.

Last, but definitely not least, here is a beautiful canvas painting created and given to me by a very multi-talented student, Isabella. I can’t wait to keep it forever and put it up on my bedroom wall back in England as a daily reminder of the kindness I was shown on my 22nd birthday.

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Generosity, no matter how big, goes such a long way – particularly for a girl who has just upped sticks to a whole new continent and could do with as much help and comfort as possible. If anybody reading this showed me generosity during my birthday weekend, whether it was in a simple message or in a card or gift, believe me when I say your kindness went a very long way! Thank you.

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