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Dama on the high seas

By Sun Ye | China Daily | Updated: 2014-05-08 06:43

They are middle-aged Chinese women who love shopping, eating and long nights of partying. Sun Ye takes a cruise with a fun-loving pack of dama.

Low-heeled loafers, loose-fitting bright-colored sweaters, tights and the essential silk scarf. This is the standard uniform of Chinese dama, or at least the 1,500 or so I join aboard the Jeju-Busan bound cruise liner Costa Atlantica.

Dama, which literally translates to "big mama", is a term to describe middle-aged Chinese women whose child-rearing years are behind them, leaving them with free time and, perhaps for the first time in their lives, a comfortable amount of disposable income. These middle-aged ladies most recently made headlines for ransacking the gold market. They are a formidable bunch, especially at sea.

Dama on the high seas

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