Meeting Mainland China

Meeting Mainland China

I’d been living in Hong Kong for almost a year now and had still never been to Mainland China, despite it being only a few miles away. Though this was mainly due to needing a ridiculously expensive visa, once I finally acquired one, I had no excuse. So I packed my camera and headed to Mainland for a day.

The closest city from Hong Kong is Shenzhen, China’s first Special Economic Zone. A city built merely 30 years ago, most people will argue this is nothing like the real China. Shenzhen is filled with kitschy theme parks, massage resorts, shopping and crime.

Shenzhen - Mar 2013 Rainy Shenzhen

The day we went it ended up pouring rain most the day, so paying an expensive entry fee to a theme park was out of the question, and it was too late for massage reservations. Instead, we spent our time experiencing an American pastime in China– shopping at Wal-Mart.

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Here’s a look inside my visit to Chinese Wal-Mart with a mini photo essay.

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

The bakery consisted of various buns and dumplings

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

The deli section– complete with all different types of chicken feet

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Candy by the pound? Nope, just rice here

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Fresh, whole poultry just lying about

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Sale displays still filled the aisles

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Tons of weird Tang flavors. Mango? Yes, please!

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

A whole section of Walmart-brand jujebes

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Chinese love Coca-cola

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Yet the check-out looked just like in the US

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

Sam Walton bids shoppers farewell in the exit

It felt a little bit like we were in the twilight zone walking around somewhere that’s so familiar to us, yet completely different.

In the end, Wal-Mart really caters to the local population and almost nothing that’s found in Wal-Mart’s in the US could be found in China. But of course we couldn’t come home empty handed– so just what did we come home with?

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

A bunch of horrible sounding Chinese junk food of course! Mango Tang, mango Oreos, peach Oreos, teriyaki chicken Cheetos… just to name a few. We still have yet to open anything we bought to try, but we’ll soon find out!

Shenzhen - Mar 2013

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Have you visited someplace that’s so familiar to home, yet so different? Or to a Chinese Walmart?

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1 Comment

  1. Genevieve
    July 6, 2013 / 1:49 am

    Heya, cool photoessay!