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The not so curious case of single women   2012-08-24 07:06:00

Niulang, a shepherd falls in love with goddess Zhinu. They get married in the hope of living happily ever after. In walks the "villain", Zhinu's godfather. He separates the two lovers, allowing them to meet only on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month, or Qixi, which today we know as Chinese Valentine's Day. This is an ancient fairytale.

Let's return to 2012 and to the Internet. Zhinu meets Niulang on Qixi and breaks down. She says: "Can you buy a house? If you can, my parents will have no excuse to separate us."

The joke reflects the difficulties today's youth face. Buying a house, often a prerequisite for marriage, is unthinkable for many because of skyrocketing property prices. To add insult to injury, wedding ceremonies and banquets are becoming increasingly unaffordable.

At present, most couples in big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai get married with the help of their parents. Reports show that in Beijing a couple need at least 270,000 yuan ($42,470) to get married. A wedding dress and banquet would cost about 54,000, and the rest would go to pay the installment for a house and perhaps a car.

Society likes to blame young women for telling their partners to prepare for everything before marriage. But marriage has come to be based on economics, and living costs have to be calculated.

These and other factors have forced many a woman to stay single.

source : People's Daily Online     editor:: Ala
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