June 05, 2004

24 hours in Guangzhou

It's all a pleasant blur. We took the train to Guangzhou, about two hours north of Hong Kong. Dave Merrill and I were slated to speak to grad students at South China Normal University. When we walked into the auditorium the room burst into applause. I felt like we had just come out of the green room onto the stage of the Tonight Show. Our two presentations, though it wasn't planned that way at all, were nicely complementary. SCNU has a beautiful campus and there were happy vibes in the air because of graduation week.

After the presentations we were treated to yet another amazing dinner with the vice-president of the university, followed by a ride down the Pearl River to see Guangzhou by night.

The next day, three of the SCNU faculty and I visited the Guangdong Folk Art Museum, a sprawling collection of carvings, porcelein, jade and you name it housed in the ancestral home of the Chen family. Another lunch which included my first taste of durian, a fruit so smelly that my hotel lobby had a sign forbidding anyone to bring one in. It was delicious. Then we went trawling through the shopping district looking for fancy chopsticks for gifts.

A zillion pictures may be found, right here.



At 7:50 AM, Karl said...

Ahh, durian. One part fruit, two parts weapon. I'd take a durian into a fight anyday and swing it like a club, not to mention its potential as a weapon of mass olfactory destruction. Hard durian candies are particuarly foul...


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