Pinoyspotting: China

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 Shanghai’s skyline is stunning. (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Shanghai’s skyline is stunning. (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

In Shanghai, I found myself nostalgic for the Philippines, from the side streets to the “Adidas” (chicken feet) sold by vendors. As the world’s most populated city, Shanghai is also full of contrasts. Side by side with progress and prosperity are smog and demolition of old neighborhoods. I experienced Shanghai, and I’ll savor every second of it for many years!
 I met Carl, a housing activist in Shanghai. His old neighborhood is being torn down for gentrification. (Photo courtesy of Ivan Kevin Castro)

I met Carl, a housing activist in Shanghai. His old neighborhood is being torn down for gentrification. (Photo courtesy of Ivan Kevin Castro)

 The author with Erwin Querubin, Rachel Alde, and Yuan Fang (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

The author with Erwin Querubin, Rachel Alde, and Yuan Fang (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

I went to iapm, the most upscale shopping mall in Shanghai. I bumped into a Filipino-American couple from Los Angeles: Erwin Querubin and Rachel Alde. They were with their friend Yuan Fang, who is from Shanghai. Rachel was on a business trip because of the upcoming Shanghai Disney Resort.

 Ellaine Navarro Guevara, Ivan Kevin Castro, and Melanie Mendoza (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Ellaine Navarro Guevara, Ivan Kevin Castro, and Melanie Mendoza (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Liquid Laundry is a gastropub in Shanghai. Ellaine Navarro Guevara (Vigan City, Ilocos Sur) is the assistant manager, while Melanie Mendoza (Tinambac, Camarines Sur) is a waiter.  

 Gary Casauran, Janette Heruela, and the author (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Gary Casauran, Janette Heruela, and the author (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Cantina Agave is a Mexican restaurant in Beijing and Shanghai (Puxi and Pudon). Gary Casauran (Manila) is the general manager of the entire Cantina Agave. Janette Heruela (Rosario, La Union) is the assistant manager at the Puxi branch.

 Upper: Gabby Gabriel and Alyson Lynn. Lower: Cris Garcia and the author (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Upper: Gabby Gabriel and Alyson Lynn. Lower: Cris Garcia and the author (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

Gabby Gabriel (Cleveland, Ohio) and Alyson Lynn (Belfast, Northern Island) are roommates in Shanghai. Gabby is an entrepreneur. Her latest venture is the website, shanghailovenotes.com, a poetry – photography fusion. Alyson is a teacher. They are crazy over their household engineer, Cris Garcia (Baguio City).

 The author with Oscar de la Cruz (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

The author with Oscar de la Cruz (Photo by Rey E. de la Cruz)

My uncle Oscar de la Cruz (Ballesteros, Cagayan) is a Los Angeles-based theme-park architect. He is temporarily staying in Shanghai because of the Shanghai Disney Resort construction.


 Ivan Kevin Castro

Ivan Kevin Castro

Ivan Kevin Castro is based in Chicagoland. A photography enthusiast, he has an artistic temperament with paintings. An audiophile, he can’t go without music. Although he only has dreams, he is an aspiring global explorer of the world's richest cultures.