01. Brief Jewish History
About 20,000 European Jews found refuge in Shanghai during WW2. When I just returned to the city, I had to go back to where it used to be a Jewish Ghetto. It does put a smile on my face knowing that while the locals had their own hardships, they still welcomed the Jewish people into their home. This alone made me respect this city even more. You can read some of the personal stories by people who once lived in Shanghai during wartime over here.
A little history lesson behind the term “ghetto,” you may not know – the term ghetto originally referred exclusively to walled Jewish Quarters, where Jewish people were required to live by law. Jewish Quarter of Venice was set up in 1516 (although, the first ghettos were in Spain and Portugal at the end of 14th century). Having a section of a city in which Jewish people lived was considered extremely tolerant and permissive, since the standard at the time that Jewish people weren’t allowed to live anywhere, and if you saw a Jewish person after dark you were legally allowed to kill them. The establishment of the ghetto mean that there was a safe place for the Jewish people, who came to Venice fleeing the Inquisition Poland and the Ottoman Empire. You can read more about the history of the word, ghetto, over here.
02. Muslim Noodle Shops
Watching my noodles being made right in front of me at a local Muslim soup joint will be one of the things I’m going to miss when I leave Shanghai. Not only I’m all about the pulled noodle, the local Muslim joints are among the very few places where I can eat dumplings that are not made of pork.
Don’t get me started on the sandwich. This is my lunch. Continue reading “10 Reasons Why I Like Shanghai”