As 2021 draws to an end, let's look at Shanghai's lively inhabitants
Life in Shanghai is lively and varied. People from all walks of life tried their best to make the city colorful and lovely this year, as it now comes to an end.
Yang Hailong, 22, an employee for the food delivery platform Ele.me, brings warm food to people in office buildings and residential complexes downtown, hoping the tasty meals can comfort them a little bit amid the frigid winter.
He came to Shanghai this year from Guang'an, in central China's Sichuan Province.
"There are so many outstanding people in Shanghai, and they work hard and live vigorously," said Yang.
"One day, I delivered food around 11pm to an office building in the Jing'an Temple area. There were people still working late, deep into the night."
For him, being a delivery driver in a big city is not easy. It's difficult to make sure customers can enjoy their food within a guaranteed time frame; always within an hour. Delivery drivers usually can only have their own meals after peak time, which usually lasts from 11am to 2pm and 5pm to 8pm.
"I always have lunch after 2pm and dinner after 8pm."
Fortunately, many big companies have opened their mail stations for drivers. After the lunch and dinner rush hours, they can have a rest there. There are additional discounts for delivery people.
The platform they work for prepares warm outfits like gloves, coats and kneepads.
Also, working time is flexible, and drivers can receive additional pay for extra work.
"For the upcoming new year, I hope to make more money, and if possible, I want to be the head of a delivery station!"
Expat residents from all over the world experienced Shanghai-style life now.
Alice Melloni, a female artist from Italy, runs an art studio with her husband in Shanghai.
Melloni came to Shanghai for her son and daughter-in-law, and now she has a grandson on the way.
Shanghai is a magical city for her as the environment and energetic life here bring her more artistic inspiration.
"Art is life for me, and ideas and emotions are like food."
So this year has been wonderful with many highlights for her as she finished many pieces of art and had many brilliant artistic ideas from her life here.
"I will spend the last days of 2021 in my workplace, Ailimeile Studio, to work as an art director and make a miniature set with my team," Melloni told Shanghai Daily.
For the upcoming 2022, she is full of hope.
"I plan to apply our artistic knowledge to more fields and create a spot where clients can come and try any kind of special effects like animatronics, stop motion, vinyl toys and special props in the new year," Melloni said. "I wish for all a grateful and happy life, without the pandemic."
After making the hard decision to move to China, South Korean Soyul Jeong, 26, arrived in Shanghai on December 6 full of expectation and hope for a wonderful new journey here.
Jeong first visited Shanghai in January 2018, and ever since then settling in this magical city has become one of her dreams.
As such, she decided to leave her post at Standard Chartered Bank South Korea and joined the Third Bridge Shanghai Office as a research associate in order to explore more opportunities in the city.
"I am pleased to begin a new chapter of my life in Shanghai, a cosmopolitan megacity full of fun," Jeong said.
"Well, it was not an easy decision during COVID-19 as I had to go through two weeks of quarantine and one week of self-health monitoring."
However, she found a way to cheer herself up with tasty food that was brought to her door during the quarantine period by her friends in Shanghai.
"l was lucky enough to be in a quarantine hotel which allows delivery service. Hence, I enjoyed various local food such as xiaolongbao (steamed pork dumplings), hotpot and lamb skewers," she said with a big smile. "Now, I am able to dash across this beautiful city."