Thursday, May 31, 2007

Little boys on the street


Little boy's smile
Shanghai, China, May 2007 [Click all images to enlarge]


Foreign-looking folks are nothing new to the residents of Shanghai. This is likely China's most western-influenced, outward-looking city, so the friendliness factor was high whenever we took to the streets. To wit, this young man's family, out for a stroll on the pedestrian mall, stopped and bantered with us as we took pictures of them with their son.

Later on, I came across a mom trying to make her stroller-riding baby smile with a handheld toy fan. I had been taking pictures of a nearby statue, but when she rolled up with her stroller and smiled at my camera, my subject clearly changed. The ensuing conversation, heavy on body language and gestures, allowed me to connect with a complete stranger and make a little guy smile. I guess trust still exists here. Definitely a good thing.

Small people, small moments: they look remarkably the same here as they do back home.

Your turn: A small moment. Please discuss.

19 comments:

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Hello from Michele's. I get the first comment on your "little boys" photos? Great. A small moment, huh? My youngest grandchild is now seven, not so small any more. A smile is a small thing, but really a very big deal. I'm not doing too well on this, am I? Sorry. You are invited to visit my blog(s), if you like. I'll be back.

tommiea said...

my small moment....during a loud thunderstorm last night, my 3 year old appears at my bedside.....he says, "My arm is sparkling..." the only thing I can figure out is his arm fell sleep and the was tingling. Kind of a cute thing I want to remember

Paul said...

Small people. You're right. They look the same no matter where you go. Mostly, they look innocent, eh?

Here from Michele's.

Diane Mandy said...

Just wanted to tell you how much I am enjoying your photos and trip to China!

kenju said...

Carmi, the boys in your photos are adorable. What is the significance of the red star on the forehead?

Beverly said...

Boy, those smiles win one's heart every time.

Mike said...

I always enjoy the pictures on your site. I was in Saudi Arabia in 2000 and enjoyed meeting some of the people there.

Here from Michele's

Moogie said...

These boys are adorable. What great shots. I too have been enjoying reading about your trip to China. Like Kenju, I want to know what the red star on the forehead signifies.

Stacy said...

Don't you just love the stares? And then they look at their parents and say, "Lao wai!" I love that. There were some little kids (about 4 or 5) who used to point at us and call us "wai guo ren" which means foreigner, but literally means "other country person." So we started pointing to them and saying "Zhong guo ren!" which means china person. ha! They got the biggest kick out of that. They would laugh and giggle. It was a fun game, and very soon they were handing us candy. :)

Great pictures, and I love the boy with the sticker on his forehead. Very cute.

Awareness said...

Nothing warms my heart more readily than a smiling little one. they beam with delight....such innocence.

Great photos....

Paul Sveda said...

We are all the same, just the language, skin color and some traits change. Underneath we are all trying to get through life. I am, as maybe you yourself were, surprised by western influence in other countries. You see the use of English on clothing, signs and so much more.

Great shots by the way.

Cheers,

P.

Michele say hello.

CG said...

When Kate was tiny a group of Japanese tourists in Chester stopped and asked by gestures if they could take her photo. We agreed but they then picked her out of her pushchair and EACH had a pic taken holding her! She really enjoyed it and I often wonder how the pictures were described when they were shown to the folks back in Japan LOL

JAM said...

Wonderful photos. Kids are kids, ya know?

I find that if I'm taking photos say, at a church event, kids always come up and say "take a picture of me!" and then "let me see it!", as they are already so used to the instant gratification of a digital photograph.

Bob-kat said...

I love the look on the kids face as he watches the windmill. Samea s anywhere else - totally captivated!

Mr. Althouse said...

Sometimes language seems so inadequate to describe the connections we make with others around the world. People talk about a language barrier this or communication gap that...

There are ways other than words to communicate. Music, pictures... and smiles speak deeper sometimes than words can. This image is a great example.

Mike, sans Michele's guidance this time.

Becky68 said...

The boys are adorable.
Small moments are large in my life, I have them all the time with my kids, tonight, planting the garden with my two youngest they were dreaming of tomatoes to come & my 7 year old thanked me for buying a house in the country so we could have a garden!
Here from Micheles

Rachel said...

Wonderful pictures! I think those small moments are something that little guy might remember later in life! Who knows? A man from another country smiling and being friendly to him? I would have remembered that when I was a kid, but now it's not as unusual as it would have been back then.

I love reading about your China trip!

Terri said...

What a smile! And like music and many other things...a smile is universal.
Small moments grow to become monumental memories.

Anna said...

Hey Carmi! I am finally back to comments! Hope that you are well there in your neck of the woods! This image is great! How happy he looks! :) There really is nothing like a child with an ear to ear grin...