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WEATHER REPORT
At Ikea, Chinese shoppers make themselves at home
by Staff Writers
Shanghai (AFP) July 6, 2017


When it's sweltering in Shanghai, do as the locals do and settle down for a nap at Ikea -- if you can find an open bed.

Chinese have a peculiar penchant for making themselves at home in the Swedish retailer's airconditioned showrooms, snoozing on beds, dozing on couches, and eating at dinner tables -- and the phenomenon is on full display as the sweltering summer sets in.

With the mercury pushing 37 C (98.6 F) and outside feeling distinctly muggy, people from all walks of life -- children with parents, couples, and the elderly -- can be seen lounging and even, somehow, catching a few Zs amid the crush of shoppers.

Apparently recognising the potential profit that comes from increased footfall, Ikea has long tolerated serving as a surrogate living room for Chinese consumers, many of whom live in tiny apartments and appear to revel in stretching out on a spacious sofa.

But an Ikea store in Shanghai last year imposed a "no food, no seating" rule in its popular cafeteria, which had reportedly become the chosen venue for many widowed or divorced elderly seeking a romantic match.

Ikea's Chinese couch potatoes are expected to remain out in force for the time being.

The Shanghai Meteorological Bureau issued a yellow heatwave signal this week, which warns of temperatures climbing past 35 degrees.

WEATHER REPORT
Turkey, Greece swelter under soaring temperatures
Istanbul (AFP) July 2, 2017
Turkey was on Sunday sweltering in a weekend heatwave that caused record temperatures in much of the country and triggered forest fires in the Aegean region. The southern resort city of Antalya, a magnet for foreign tourists, saw its highest temperature ever since records began, with the mercury hitting 45.4 degrees Celcius (114 Fahrenheit), the state-run Anadolu news agency said. In Ist ... read more

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