Lost in translation.

I’m very grateful for Google Translate and use it (when Google is working!) to help me get my message across here in Shanghai . However, when I consider some of the translations from Chinese into English that I’ve photographed around China I understand why people sometimes look at me strangely when I ask them something…..


This one was on the bulk food bins: the ‘teeths’ they are referring to are presumably those of tongs.




I’m pretty sure that the name of this cafe sounds poetic in Chinese written and/or spoken language but just plain weird in English,





This message flashed up on the screen of an ATM and I quickly made my way to a bank to avert my bankcard being swallowed (or some other unwanted event). Eventually after explaining what my concern was, I was told “Oh every foreigner gets this message…..just ignore it”.

Shanghighs‘: I had a visit from my former neighbor Grace and her husband.


Grace is an amazing lady – in her previous job she spent a great deal of time translating documents (hence her impeccable English)   Unfortunately her speech is now very slow and slurred due to the removal of a brain tumor a couple of years ago – which also put a stop to her career). Grace never took vacation and is clearly missing her work and her friends – many of whom apparently have avoided her since she fell ill presumably from fear of ‘catching’ something??? She has just finished writing her autobiography and most probably has other projects in the pipeline.IMG_4259

While Sebastien was completing a 50km ‘Corporate Responsible’ bike-ride with his colleagues on the week-end, the kids and I enjoyed the lake (around which Sebastien rode) and tasting some of the local treats….. which included some kind of water seed (similar to the lotus) and sugar cane.


Shanglows‘: The lovely antique market on DongTai Lu (featured in a previous post on ‘old stuff’) has been demolished………that’s progress for you!

Shangunusuals‘: My 4.6year-old son suddenly stopped walking along the footpath and promptly spat onto it. I had mixed feelings of shock, disgust and pride (it really was a magnificent job!). Whilst spitting in public is on the decline here, it’s still pretty common (hence Antoine’s action!).



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