ANN/SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST – A woman in eastern China who rises almost every morning for a 6am bike ride around her community while shouting loudly to try and boost her lung capacity has been dubbed the “human alarm clock” by neighbours.
Since October last year, the woman has been a regular fixture on her neighbourhood streets in Anhui province. As she passes on her bike, she shouts towards nearby residential housing blocks with one arm stretched out towards the units.
Her punctual shouts can be heard across an entire block, and it was not long before one resident, surnamed Chang, named her the “human alarm clock” and “da geng woman”.
The latter refers to night watchmen who used to tell the time by banging a gong as they walked the streets in ancient China.
Chang posted a video of the woman’s “daily routine” filmed from his upper-floor flat on the mainland video platform Douyin on April 16.
“Here she comes. Ready… start,” Chang said in the video as the woman is shown cycling towards his building, then letting out a shout that lasted for almost 10 seconds.
“Here’s another one,” Chang said as another long shout from the woman filled the air.
The video has attracted more than 70,000 comments, many showing amusement at the woman’s unusual exercises. Several commenters expressed sympathy for Chang, noting that he was familiar with the time and patterns of the woman’s shouting exercises.
After the first video, Chang started waking early regularly and waiting for the woman to pass by his window so he could record a video diary of her routine on Douyin.
One day, a group of residents are shown in the video confronting the woman in the street and asking her to stop making so much noise.
Chang continued rising early to record the woman in the days following the confrontation, but when she passed by on her bike, she no longer shouted.
Instead, she slapped her legs, arms and chest and knocked her fists on her head apparently as a compromise with the residents who complained.
Once she passed Chang’s block, she would resume her regular shouting again.
Chang said no one knew where the mystery woman lived or why she was so committed to improving her lung capacity by shouting, but some drew comparisons to elderly people who often shout or laugh out loud while exercising in local parks to boost lung capacity.
Chang has continued keeping a diary of the woman, and at the time of writing, was on his 32nd day documenting her routine in daily videos which continue to attract online comments.
“She never knew a man was waiting for her so punctually every day,” one person quipped.
“Did you fall in love with her?” another jokingly asked.