Chinese supermarket

May 29, 2007


D and I found these in a traditional Chinese supermarket (French Concession, Shanghai). These are usually small, white-tiled, and fairly clean, with live animals, noodles, and fruit and vegetables. 

I was convinced these squiggly things were some type of sea snake. They sure didn’t look like eels.

D asked the stall-holders: “Are these sea snakes?” No. “Eels?” No. “What are they then?” But they just laughed uncomfortably.

Late that night, L (Chinese, and knowledgeable) was able to confirm that these are in fact eels. She said that eels are always kept near toads in Chinese supermarkets.

 Perhaps it’s considered sensible to keep all the ugly things together in one corner.

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