Ni hao. I’m writing this sat in café Blenz, at Baiyun Airport, Guangzhou. (Surprisingly good coffee, if you’re ever in the neighbourhood.)
I’m en route to New Zealand, with a sanity-eroding seven-hour stopover. No Facebook, no Twitter, no social feeds to keep me from boredom, so I’m writing my heart out.
It feels rather odd to have teleported from a cold London autumn (yet I am assured it is very mild in context of years past) to cardigan slaughtering 26°C heat. And the smell. I can’t put my finger on it, but China just has this smell – possibly a meld of hot meat, combined with constantly poured concrete and a fastidious devotion to exotically scented cleaning products – and you just know, I am in China.
These photos are a blast from the past. The year is 2009 and I was in China, staying with my friend Jules in Shanghai before training north to Beijing. The little dude at the top was the guardian of Jules’ apartment building.
Midnight feasts on the street
Taikang Lu, Shanghai