Settling In


The pathway to our neighborhood grocery store.

Melinda and I have lived in Shanghai for a bit over three months and parts of it are beginning to feel familiar. We adapt quickly to new surroundings; I’m not sure if it is genetically wired into us, or if we learned this behavior by moving nine times before the kids started elementary school (15 times in 26 years together), but it helps when adjusting to new surroundings and leaving behind the familiarity and comfort of family, friends and community.  We know our train routes without constantly looking at the metro map, or counting stops and we can tell whether the cab driver is taking the best route to our destination. We have a regular fruit vendor and a neighborhood convenience store and the DVD store knows us and warns us if a certain movies is not a good copy. Melinda has a coffee shop near work where she is already a regular. We have not, however, been here long enough to lose the wonder of discovery, both large and small. This past weekend, returning home from a day in the Puxi side of town, we decided to enter our compound from the north, a path we’d not yet taken, and we were rewarded with the discovery of a Spa (massage center), a reasonably priced grocery store and most importantly to Melinda, a well-stocked  wine shop, all located in an old style Chinese compound. (We haven’t learned whether this compound is a new creation by the developer, or if it is an actual, restored structure; more on that later).

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