“You stubborn as a mule, Lady!” Really??? My husband later called the stall vendor a shaman for knowing me so well after a short, tough negotiation session for a jade Buddha I wanted. After the mule reference, he turned flirty and called me his girlfriend and told James that he was lucky to have me as his Mom. Then, talking man to man with Thom, he shook his head and said, “You get to go home with her!” and I’m not sure if he was saying that in a good way or a bad way but I think he respected my sassy and firm style of negotiating. In all fairness to my new friend, many of my ex-bosses have called me stubborn as a bulldog but, again, I always took that in a positive way, probably because a bulldog is cuter than a mule or that could just be me rationalizing but I digress.
Our Sunday was spent wandering Dongtai Antique Market (or Diagon Alley which is what it looked like to me–I expected to see a wand store at any time), I bargained hard for lots of cool treasures. Thom wanted a large and extremely heavy stone horse statue to celebrate the Year of the Horse coming up in 2014–got it for 150RMB (starting price I think was around 800RMB). Thom had a moment of panic when we got home and he wiped the grime off the horse and it changed colors…oops! It changed back when it dried but Thom is now threatening to put it out on the balcony so it can accumulate smog dirtiness and restore it’s antique luster.
James had a hankering for dragons (probably because we just watched The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug at home on DVD and, yes, it is still in the U.S. theaters) so I negotiated for him and got an intricate dragon statue and a dragon pocket watch as well as some beads and figurines for his friends back home. I also started our Beijing Opera mask collection with the goal to get several and hang on our wall. They are so colorful and full of emotion. So many treasures, so little time!
In between shopping, we enjoyed a vendor serenading us and watched some serious mah jong being played. Ahhhhhh….Sunday in Shanghai is a treat for the senses.