I’m in Guangzhou, speaking at the China Education & Research Network conference. I gave a slight spin on my talk from Abu Dhabi, but the experience of being in China is a world apart. Here are a few snapshots from toting my camera:
During the trip from the railway station to the hotel I’m staying at, the vehicle I was in merged on to an elevated highway. As we were merging, I saw a bicyclist pedaling along with a trailer, with a dog sitting on top. The mental image was so unbelievable that even though the camera was powered up, I still had to swing around and take the picture out the rear window of the minibus.
After registering with the conference, I went for a short walk in the neighborhood of the hotel. To cross the streed, pedestrians need to cross a right-turn lane for cars. Even small pedestrians aren’t safe from cars that take the turn very fast, though they do at least appear to swerve for toddlers.
Traffic lights are also advisory. I’d heard the sound of whistles from the twentieth floor of the hotel, but it wasn’t until I got down to street level that I realized that traffic cops were directing traffic, even though the intersection of two six-lane roads has a traffic lights.