Not everyone can be happy dressed as a pumpkin, but really, Chinese people seem to have a pretty good grip on this whole Halloween thing. Last night I saw a ghoul, a huge yellow and blue stripey tiger and a sumo wrestler wandering along the street, followed by someone in a swimming costume with an overcoat and blonde wig (on second thoughts, she may have been going somewhere other than a Halloween party). There are spider webs and skulls in all the shops, and even The Lady of Wulumuqi Lu has been ahead of the game with huge pumpkins for sale in her shop since last month.
At school, the annual Halloween parade is held in the grounds of the very busy and very public Shanghai Zoo. This makes for a pretty interesting spectacle – a couple of hundred foreign children in costumes, followed by a couple of hundred interested bystanders with cameras. Some of them are even parents. For the Chinese zoo visitors, it’s like an open air wildlife safari, filled with exotic, colourful species from far away lands. I was wondering why the school erected a sort of rope barrier, but after experiencing the Chinese paparazzi I can see why. Crowd control.