Nov 23, 2012

Holiday shopping

Don’t miss out on the National Day sales

Outdoor market
Emily's new coatPeter's new coat

Whereas Mid-Autum Festival is a harvest feast holiday like American Thanksgiving, National Day Week is a time for shopping … much like the day after American Thanksgiving.

We didn’t really intend to do much shopping — saving’s the name of the game for us — but we both scored new coats; Peter’s at a phenomenal sale price of 300RMB [US$48] down from 1,200RMB [US$192]. For most of the week, however, we just enjoyed the window dressing. A big strip of new stores went up in late summer along Middle Road, and the merchandise there was much higher end (and covet-able) than what was there before. We didn’t buy anything, but it was fun to see what could have been (in our closets).

Where there’s shopping, of course, there’s eating. For the holiday week, the vendors who sold snacks in the streets around the city center were allowed to set up right in the main pedestrian plaza, creating a big outdoor food court. Except this was no Panda Express/Blimpie-type operation. You could choose from noodles, spicy potatoes, crispy pancakes, meat on sticks, sushi and much more, and it was all delicious. Even on a rainy day, plenty of people stopped to pull up a stool under the tarps. Everything was a little wet, but no one minded too much.