MONDAY, OCTOBER 29. Had dinner with some friends last night. We went to a Szechuan style place. It is OK, but not really good. One of the girls ordered, so that might have something to do with it. She ordered mostly veggies, little protein.
Had a very long piece published in the Shenzhen Daily today. It was the lead editorial and took up about half of the editorial page. It was about the need for transparency in business and government in China. It was mildly critical, so I’m surprised it was published. There was very little editing.
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 30. Very bad air today. I can’t seen even an outline of the mountains. If I throw something from the balcony it would probably take 5 minutes to hit the ground because the air is so thick.
It started raining about out 12:30, just when I usually hit the street. I’m a little cautious about walking on wet tile sidewalks, but I grabbed an umbrella and went anyway. I was out I got a call from Anne Zhang who writes from the Shenzhen Daily. I‘ve never met her. She wanted to do a short interview for a human interest piece in tomorrow’s paper. I ducked into a deserted cafe and talked to her about 10 minutes. She was mostly interested in finding how I have adjusted to China. I’m looking forward to seeing her piece.
When I got back this afternoon Vivian was there trying to help Sea fill out the application papers for her U.S. visa. It’s extremely complicated. I had to be her “sponsor” hand had to fill out three different forms of about 9 pages total. Most questions were legalese gibberish. I emailed my forms to Nina so she can look them over. When all the papers are in order Sea has to go to Guangzhou for a personal interview. As I said before, nothing is easy in China.
Above are some random pics. The first is the view from my window on the bad air day. No mountains are visible. The second and third are of sidewalk card games. Old men squat for hours on the corners and gamble for small stakes. I once saw the police bust up a card game and take a couple of players into custody, but before the police car was out of sight a new game began. The fourth and fifth pics are of some sidewalk selling pitch. I don’t know what they were selling.