Shanghai, China (Shanghai Museum and Flower, Bird, Fish & Insect Market)
The Shanghai Museum is a museum of ancient Chinese art, situated on the People’s Square in the Huangpu District of Shanghai, China.
When you first walk into the Shanghai’s Flower, Bird, Fish & Insect Market through a small corridor packed with people, you’ll hear a cacophony of cats meowing, birds calling, and dogs barking, which of course, seems par for the course in any pet shop around the world. But as you walk through the narrow alleyways that make up the market and poke your head into the individual stalls, you’ll see shell-less turtles trying to crawl from their tanks, pink, naked-looking frogs splashing in their tiny fish bowls and wire-caged chinchillas looking particularly shell-shocked.
Like many things in China, the market makes for a complete sensory overload. Perhaps most overwhelming is the multiplicity of crickets for sale; you can buy them in small paper boxes, plastic canisters, tiny little cages with wire doors or, most popularly, in wicker, circular baskets. If you don’t know Chinese lore, crickets bring good luck, but they also can carry an extraordinary price tag—some go for $1000 or more. Cricket fighting is a big deal in China, and a well-raised cricket can be a gem to the lucky purchaser.