Made it to the World Expo, us and 341,300 other people. It was a light day, only 486, 400. How do I know this? Well the subway station tells you at that moment of time how many visitors there are to the expo and so does the web site. China wants to break attendance records for all World’s Fairs. It is also the most expensive and largest in history as well.The theme is Better City, Better Life.
It was incredible to see and is like Epcot and Millennium Village on something more than steroids, it was HUGE. The China pavilion alone is the size of 35 football fields. My feet still are hurting from all the walking.
The mascot for the expo is this blue character called Hai Bao, his name means treasure of the sea. He is blue and looks kinda like an updated blue Gumby or a glob of toothpaste. A lot of thought went into his development.
- Hair: the hair of the mascot is like the wave of the sea, which represents its open character and stated the character of its birth place Shanghai.
- Face: its cartoon expression shows its confidence and friendly character.
- Eyes: big, round eyes show his anticipation of the city.
- Blue: the color shows its latitude and imagination, which represents the rising and potential China.
- Body: its round body represents a well-off life, which is also lovely and cute.
- Fist: he thumbs up to show the appreciation and warm welcome to the friends from all over the world.
- Big feet: he stands steadily on the big feet and embraces the world with big arms, which shows China have the ability and faith to host a successful Expo.
He grows on you and can be found everywhere and folks are buying up his merchandise. I even got a Chinese style lantern with him on it.
The lines to get into the pavilions are long. The day we went, to get into the China pavilion it was a 4 hour wait. That was nothing compared to other days when it averages 8-9 hrs. Good gosh! There were people everywhere! The queue lines expansive. Queuing from my experience is not a norm in China, where when you want to get on the subway, use the restroom. order from a counter, you just go up and do it. To help with the lines, they have corrals set up with signs on behavior but from the shorter queues we waited like for North Korea, Sri Lanka, Oman, Cuba, you are corralled but there is not really an order to it. When the doors open it is a bum rush to get in. Many brought their own chairs to sit in as they wait in line.
We walked up to look at the Morocco pavilion for the carvings and details were incredible. One of the hosts came over and asked us where we were from and he opened the ropes and escorted us into the pavilion, we by passed the line. I wish there was a fast pass for your home country for I would have liked to have seen the US pavilion, the line was hours long. I did get a glance into the gift shop where I saw lots of cowboy hats for sale. The hats were very popular with the Chinese, many were trying them on and taking photos.
It was a great experience to see and be a part of history. Now I can say I have been to the 2010 World’s Fair or Expo as they are now called. Anyone who is coming to Shanghai between now and October 31, I am happy to take you in and walk around but as for waiting in the lines.. you are on your own.. however we may be able to get into Morocco no problem.