Last weekend and the days prior to it the weather bureau issued dire threats about the approach of Typhoon Muifa and the potentially disasterous consequences of its arrival in either Shanghai or anywhere along the east coast of China within a 1500 km range.
Beach concerts and other outdoor activities were cancelled. Saturday was the Chinese equivalent of Valentine’s Day (Qixi), and wanna-be romantic couples were told to stay indoors and not plan picnics or romantic strolls in case they were blown/washed away in the process.
So we battened down all hatches and waited to experience the “worst typhoon” for many years…..and then Muifa (downgraded to a tropical storm) whimpered passed Shanghai bringing a few rain showers and a couple of gusts of wind and decided to strike the Northern coast of China and South Korea instead.
[Please don’t get me wrong: I am relieved that it didn’t fulfill the predictions of the weather bureau – a lots of people would have been wet and hurt and probably got themselves killed by falling trees and buildings.]
The rest of the week consisted of ongoing hot, humid weather with a few blasts of rain and thunderstorms, but not nearly as much as predicted by the “do we ever manage to get it right?” weather bureau.
On Friday morning, we awoke as usual and went for our morning jog around the park. It was very cloudy with a smattering of rain – making running quite pleasant for a change – and a nice breeze: not fresh, but nice.
15 minutes later, at about 8.00, while recovering from the run, I wondered if we had experienced an unprecedented solar eclipse. Within minutes the apartment was pitch black.
And a few minutes later the heavens opened and threw down enough rain to make Muifa (from Shanghai’s perspective at any rate) look like the sprinkle of water from a watering can. Visibility on the roads dropped to about 3 metres, traffic ground (or sloshed to a halt) and we decided to work from home to avoid the inevitable total immersion experience of heading out into the rain and the 100% predictable disappointment of not finding an empty taxi!