TRAVELOGUE

Shanghai: St. Ignatius Cathedral & Shanghai Museum

Sunday morning found Puey and I accompanying Ade for mass at the St. Ignatius Cathedral. Puey had never been to one before, and it was better than lazing about our apartment anyway. The cathedral was closed to sightseers that morning – we were stopped by the security guard who let us through only when Ade said that we were there for mass. A Chinese woman tried to get into the building by tagging along with us, to which he tested her on what her supposed religion was. I didn’t get to hear her answer.

Anyway, Ade had chosen this place because it was the closest church to us that had an English service; although to be honest, I could barely understand the heavily-accented English of the pastor. The place was smaller than I thought it would be from its exterior, but it was beautiful. It also dredged up fond childhood memories of following Aunty Dev to Sunday Mass in which I got to queue up for tasteless wafer biscuits (something which according to Ade, I wasn’t supposed to do, not being baptised or even Catholic for that matter). It made me miss Aunty Dev.

Wedding photoshoot in front of St. Ignatius Cathedral, Shanghai.A wedding photoshoot in front of the cathedral.

We encountered a middle-aged woman enthusiastically taking photos of the architecture, her point & shoot mounted on a small tripod. So of course she would be perfect to ask for a photo of the three of us before it was time for mass. Turned out that she was just as dedicated to helping us capture the perfect shot by tirelessly rearranging the three of us and compositing various shots. If the mix of amusement and horrified expressions chasing each other on my face was anything to go by, it was a fascinating experience that will continue to haunt me for years to come:

Puey, Ren, and Ade in front of the St. Ignatius Cathedral, Shanghai. Photo from Ade.Photo from Ade.
In which we witness the stereotypical Asian half-squat as she composed this shot.

Puey, Ade, and Ren standing in front of St. Ignatius Cathedral, Shanghai. Photo from Ade.Photo from Ade.
Arranging us by height.

Ade, Puey, and Ren standing in front of St. Ignatius Cathedral, Shanghai. Photo from Ade.Photo from Ade.
Arranging us by the colour of our clothes.

We headed to the Shanghai Museum later in the day, barely making it before they closed the doors for visitors. We only had an hour to explore the exhibits, which was quite a shame, since the museum had much to offer. Still, an hour here opened my eyes to a vast world of jade, ceramics, and money from China’s rich history. It was very educational.

Staircase of the Shanghai Museum. Photo by Ade.Photo by Ade.
Even the museum interior was so pretty!

Mongolian brass chess pieces from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) at the Shanghai Museum.Mongolian brass chess pieces from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)

Miao silver-plated, twisted copper neckband from the 1st half of the 20th century at the Shanghai Museum.Miao silver-plated, twisted copper neckband from the 1st half of the 20th century

Top: Ge (Halberd) with a turquoise-inlaid bronze haft from the late Shang Dynasty (13th-11th century BC). Bottom: Ge (Halberd) from the late Shang dynasty (13th-11th century BC) at the Shanghai Museum.Top: Ge (Halberd) with a turquoise-inlaid bronze haft from the late Shang Dynasty (13th-11th century BC)
Bottom: Ge (Halberd) from the late Shang dynasty (13th-11th century BC)

Ornaments on a funerary face covering from the late western Zhou dynasty (first half of 9th century - 771 BC) at the Shanghai Museum.Ornaments on a funerary face covering from the late western Zhou dynasty (first half of 9th century – 771 BC)

Left: Three boys and Boy holding Lingzhi (fungus) in hand from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD). Right: Square plaque with serpent design, ornament with two parrots, ornament with deer design from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Left: Three boys and Boy holding Lingzhi (fungus) in hand from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD)
Right: Square plaque with serpent design, ornament with two parrots, ornament with deer design from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD)

Belt clasp with dragon-headed serpent design from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD) and belt clasp with Zhang Qian on raft design from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Belt clasp with dragon-headed serpent design from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD) and belt clasp with Zhang Qian on raft design from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 AD)

Cast coins from the northern ethnic minorities and the Yan State at the Shanghai Museum.Cast coins from the northern ethnic minorities and the Yan State

Money of the Qing and Ming Dynasty at the Shanghai Museum.Money of the Qing and Ming Dynasty

Paper money at the Shanghai Museum.Specimens of paper money

Coin moulds from the Liang Dynasty at the Shanghai Museum.Coin moulds from the Liang Dynasty

Left: Blueish white glazed square ewer Jingdechen Ware from the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368 AD). Right: Glazed Buddha Statue Jingdechen Ware from the Yuan Dynasty at the Shanghai Museum.Left: Blueish white glazed square ewer Jingdechen Ware from the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368 AD)
Right: Glazed Buddha Statue Jingdechen Ware from the Yuan Dynasty

Rose-red glazed drum-shaped washer Jun Ware from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Rose-red glazed drum-shaped washer Jun Ware from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Rose-red glazed drum-shaped washer Jun Ware from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127 AD)

Polychrome glazed pottery ewer with a phoenix head from the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Polychrome glazed pottery ewer with a phoenix head from the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD)

Green glazed pottery dog from the eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 AD) at the Shanghai Museum.Green glazed pottery dog from the eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 AD)

Polychrome pottery sculptures at the Shanghai Museum.Polychrome pottery sculptures

You know what, I’d imagine sword coins were pretty useful to carry. XD

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