[Updated 8/14 8:30pm] Memorial flowers appeared several times today at the site of yesterday's atrocious stabbings in Sanlitun, and while several batches were cleared away by security guards, well-wishers continued to place flowers at the scene into the evening.
The flowers were likely the result of WeChat messages circulating widely yesterday, urging people to go to the site to lay down flowers out of respect.
"Tomorrow, take a little time out of your day and go leave flowers and/or positive messages on the ground where it happened. We have to change the mentality here, enough with this 'If I help, I’ll get in trouble' or 'China doesn’t value people’s life' excuses," read the post that was shared yesterday. "You can be black, white, yellow red or blue it doesn’t matter, bottom line is this, if you are in China YOU are CHINESE, you want to make China a better place then make it happen."
As the day began, it seemed that no one would step up to make the gesture. An early-morning visit to Sanlitun showed not a single flower in sight. In fact, after the continuous influx of photographs and videos all throughout the previous day, there was not a single reminder of the terrible events that occurred at the busy junction.
Frequent Sanlitun area performer Lulu Galore told us that she put down a bouquet of flowers at 10.30am, returning to find them removed by guards by 11.30am.
At around 1pm, one of our staff passed by the area in front of Taikoo Li where the attack occurred in a taxi, reporting that three bouquets left at the scene were being taken away by security guards.
Later in the afternoon, more boquets and notes in English and Chinese had been placed, saying things like "Where there is love, there is hope", "Jesus wept," and "Wishing you happiness in the next world."
By evening, some of the flowers and messages remained on sight, though it was unclear if they were the same ones from the late afternoon.
Thankfully, my faith in humanity has been partially restored after seeing these images circulating WeChat. At different points throughout the day, people did come to the site to leave flowers behind, creating a makeshift memorial to show their sympathy.
Though it's disappointing that security took away some of the flowers, it's also understandable that they would be wary of too much of a scene after yesterday's incident. And after all, it's the thought that counts – and there's definitely many among us here in Beijing that cared enough to memorialize the tragic events of yesterday.
Photos: Lulu Galore, Jingbo Wu, beijingcream
Visit the original source and full text: the Beijinger Blog