I had a bit of an amusing morning. But then I’m easily amused.
I dropped into Liuzhou Museum and took a look at the Nuo Opera Mask exhibition, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Fortunately, there was no opera being played. Then I wandered down the pedestrian street (解放南路) for a while.
Tomorrow is May 1st and a public holiday in China. As usual, the locals have convinced themselves that they have a three day holiday. In fact, they only have one day. They will also take Friday off, but have to work on Sunday to make up the time. Then they also count Saturday, which they probably don’t work anyway. So really only one extra day.
Of course, many people don’t get the holiday at all despite it supposedly being a celebration for the ‘workers’. I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s worth repeating. Only really the middle, professional classes get a holiday.
It is major shopping time. So, all the shop workers, restaurant staff, transport workers, cleaners etc. will be at work. Most entertainment places and cultural centres such as the museums will remain open as usual. And of course all the itinerant vendors and all the beggars will remain in business.
The city centre, this morning, was getting ready. Restocking. Cleaning. Building temporary sales tents in the lower part of the pedestrian street (The theme this time is new homes. The wedding picture Mafia seem to have been chucked out for the duration.)
McDonald’s was trying to deal with its promise to re-open tomorrow after being closed for a couple of weeks for refurbishment, its first since it originally opened in July 2003.
In the usual Chinese way, they were throwing bodies at the problem. Dozens of workers were swarming around in a desperate looking attempt to finish on time. Well some were swarming. Some were hanging around smoking and watching the swarmers.
Further down the pedestrian street, towards the river, behind Wuxing Department Store, the new Starbucks outlet looks very likely to fail to open for the holiday. To my eye, it was nowhere near ready. The first one at Bubugao opened weeks late.
It is my habit to avoid the downtown area during these holidays, but I might make an exception this time – just to see what happens. Unless it is raining. However, the forecast suggests otherwise.