Monday, May 26, 2008

how to recap the seventh day of my trip (guangzhou edition)

i'm typing this while cloaked in a terryclothed ritz carlton robe and slippers, fresh from a well-earned hot bath after a long day of shooting. i'm very tired, and i don't know how many words i have in me to get out.

today actually went great, although it mirrored yesterday - a great and fruitful morning, followed by a strange and disinterested crew in the afternoon. it must be something in the culture, i guess. but we still got a lot more than what we expected, so in any measure, the guangzhou portion of this trip is a success.

what has gotten to me is the guangzhou/cantonese food. we had dim sum yesterday and today, and i'm fully tired and bored of fried whole chicken, wierd pork combinations, questionable beef dishes and unenjoyable desserts (unless you love cold soups of frog ovaries, which was on our table yesterday). but tonight i had an amazing dinner in the hotel restaurant, which was as much southern china in dish as it was refined and classy - which would make the first of our trip out here. was it authentic? probably not. but i had enough of authentic, and i was craving for something sophisticated and less barbaric. mission accomplished.

here's things i noticed about this part of china:

- the last word that comes to my mind as i explore the city is communism or government control. it's a city, just like any other city. then again, i was only here for a couple of days and shooting ads for most of it.

- nobody gets hurt when everyone is playing by the same rules of the roads. and that holds true when there aren't any rules. being a passenger in a car here is a scary proposition, not just for me in the back seat, but also for the random people jutting in front of the car in a speeding intersection. i just don't get it, but i guess that's just how they do.

- the people who live in this city seem much more able to acclimate to other cultures and ideas than the people who live in my old neighborhood in the inner richmond. and, to be honest, the difference is substantial.

- i am happy to leave here for tokyo, and i wish never to return here. beijing or shanghai however? i'm game.

and i can't wait to get me some sushi.

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