June 19, 2010

A gray fog blanket surrounds the airplane on the descent to Pudong (International Airport). Grim welcome, that stays for the following days. Chinese immigration control, the first Mandarin word 老外 Lǎowài, (foreigner) while waiting for the passport check, swarms of foreign people. Outside the desk of the custom officer a weird bulky electronic device that apart from serving as a photo recorder / translator it also doubles up as a feedback device!?! After the passport control is finish you can rate the experience! (Later saw the same concept in the Bank of China, [ very happy!, not with the money transaction but with the way the girl behind the counter tried to hide her laugh behind my passport ]. Peter is waiting for me with a sign, and minutes later we hit the highway to Hangzhou. Small culture sock on the public toilet half way through (a single tightly fit line of people pissing all together in a long glass surface with running water).

We reached the city on dinner time, quickly pass by the office to grab the other 2 housemates and head in a nearby restaurant. Delicious food, tsingtao beer and a nice selection of aquariums with live fishes and cages with ducks and snakes. Our house is in the south west side of the city, crossing the river which is 4 times as wide as Thames. Fog tangling with Humidity to produce a scenery taken from the set of Blade Runner. Photos are from the block of flats (or should i say skyscrapers? nah it’s only a mere 35-40 floor construction) facing our building. Second floor with a view to the river, and the hilltops of the other side when the sky is clear…


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