China is a sombre country. The clothes are like uniforms and nobody is allowed to show any sort of personal identity. Everything is a uniform utilitarian grey and people old and young wear the look of an oppressed society.
We went out today as the rain sheeted down and thanked our lucky stars we are from the free and unrestricted west, where personal freedom is put first rather than the greater good.
Strolling past endless identikit utilitarian housing we thanked our glorious god capitalism for the freedom to run up huge credit card bills on meaningless pseudo life enhancing ephemera.
Are you buying any of this? Then perhaps you too have fallen victim to the endless western propaganda distributed to us daily about why China, communism and anything remotely anti American is bad.
Let the truth be known. This country is Alive with a capital A. Unfortunately my limited vocabulary cannot do justice to the sheer spectacle of what being in China is like. And the people, oh the people. Never have I felt so welcomed, hospitality is nothing until you have visited this country.
My misguided Western superiority came crashing to the ground today when unthinkingly I presumed that everyone wanted to talk to me to practice their English. 'Of course not' corrected my tenth new friend of the day 'we just want to make new Western friends' If only the rest of the world thought like that.
So here I sit in my bed, the sound of banging Chinese techno echoing through the walls from a not too distant club contemplating what friendship and society really means. London seems to me in this distant land a cold, dreary inhospitable place. A place over-run by greed. A place that has lost perspective of what is good in life – friendship. community, family and most of all fun.
Look out the west China is coming. Long may it continue.