(Dear English readers, please scroll down to find the ‘click’ for English translation)
(photo from www.shanghai.gov.cn )
这次飞多伦多时，路经上海。要在上海浦东机场转机，竟有八小时给我发呆。可恨的是， 我要check out 我的行李，又不可提早check in。我只可在下一班飞机起飞前三个小时check in。虽然，机场内有代放行李的服务。可是，我吝啬，因为受价太贵。 我又担心他们会在我的行李‘搞鬼’，所以只好拖着我两个大大的行李，一个背包和一个laptop, 坐立不安。
其实，我对上海有点憧憬。 可能是看太多以上海三，四十年代为背景的电影。 还有，记得有一次， 我在墨尔本的一间上海餐馆见到一张相片。还以为是什么纽约市内的超现代化大厦，后来发现原来在上海拍的。那时起，就想到上海见识它的繁华。要不是我的行李，我到要出去走一走。
虽不全面，我在机场呆了那么久，可给了我机会见到上海人的一些生活缩影。大部分年轻人都穿得很时髦又名牌堂堂， 当然手机更是花样多多。即是阿姨级也不赖。我坐的上海直飞多伦多是新航线。全机舱约八十到九十巴仙是上海人。可见出国旅行或读书或移民已是常事，所以加拿大航空才添加此新航线。坐在我身旁的一 位老太太已是七十高龄，身体健壮，常常各国游玩。她的单程（上海- 多伦多）机票是人民币八千元。我想可能是她在加国生活的女儿付的。可也贵得咋舌。我的来回（吉隆坡-多伦多-吉隆坡）机票要我马币五千多元（即人民币11千左右）就近乎要了我的命。试想整机舱的人一出手就是十多千人民币来回机票，他们的生活在中国该很过得去。
当然，我也见到蛮多穿着朴素的人，可能是从其他省在此转机的。如， 一家大小夫妻两人，爷爷婆婆和唯一的孩子要上飞机出国旅行吧 (或许也是他们的第一次）。 大家一块儿分已准备好的三文治当午餐吃，场面很温馨。还有，一个小哥哥（可能才八，九岁）一手拖着一个小行李，另一手手牵着小妹妹，在机场穿梭。小哥哥有一副厚眼睛，走得有点急促，可能在找父母。让我有点担心。
On my way to Toronto this time, I had to transit in Shanghai Pudong International Airport. Unfortunately, I had to wait in the airport for 8 hours. The worst thing was, I had to check out all my luggages and could only re-check in three hours prior the next flight departure. Though there was services of luggage locker, the price was too expensive and I was not too comfortable with it. It meant I had to carry my two large suitcases (each was about 25 kg), one backpack and one laptop with me for five hours in the airport.
The airport is very big and modern but it is still not enough for the huge population of China. Hence, it was very difficult for me to find a seat and the seat would be taken immediately as soon as I left it. Of course, I could not bear to sit in the same seat for 5 hours without any movement, hence had to get up to walk around a bit. And every time it would take me at least 20 minutes to find another seat. There were some westerners could not be bothered to look for a seat and just sat on the ground. Thankfully, the airport was quite clean.
Frankly, I longed for Shanghai as a city for a little while. Possibly I had seen many films that had it as the backdrop. Also, there was once, I saw a photo with few cutting edge designed tall towers and I thought the photo was taken somewhere in New York. To my surprise ( and possibly my lack of awareness) that it was taken in Shanghai. Since then, I was hoping one day I could witness Shanghai’s modernization. If it was not for my luggages, I would have gone out for a walk.
Anyway, staying 8 hours in the airport, though not complete, I could see fractional picture of Shanghainese’s lifestyles. Not to my surprise, most young people dressed fashionably with big brands and all had most recent models of cellphones. Direct flight from Shanghai to Toronto was a new air route. Close to 80 to 90 percents of passengers in this flight were Shanghaineses. It was not uncommon to go to Toronto to study, live or travel. Not wondered Air Canada opened this new direct air route.
The 70 year old lady sat beside me in the plane was very healthy and well traveled. She told me the one way air-ticket from Shanghai to Toronto was about 8000 RMB (Renmingbi), which to me was extremely expensive. It almost killed me to pay for my RM (Ringgit Malaysia) 5500 return air-ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Toronto. Although the air-ticket might be paid by her daughter who worked in Canada, it was still very expensive if compared to normal Chinese living cost. I guess most passengers on the flight must be pretty wealth off in China.
Of course, I still could see many people who dressed simply and possibly from other provinces transiting in Pudong Airport. I saw a family – a couple with the only child , a grandfather and a grandmother were sharing a pre-prepared sandwich with each other during lunchtime. This might be their first family aeroplane experience. I was so touched by the scene. I also saw a little boy pushing a small luggage with his little sister on the other hand, waking in brisk pace. Looking through his thick glasses, he seemed worried, probably was looking for his lost parents. I was also worried for him.
Anyway, I could not visit Shanghai this time, hopefully, I could do it this Dec on my way back to Malaysia. Finger crossed.