An Afternoon in Central Guangzhou

I left the house shortly after the worst of the storm had passed, and once it seemed like I was not at risk of being soaked.  In typical Guangzhou fashion, it rained for three hours, but the sky remained the same impenetrable grey.  Someday I may stop noticing this lack of sun, though I can’t picture a life without.  Beijing Reminded me of Blade Runner, I haven’t found a comparison for this new city.

The bus didn’t arrive for a long time, and my mind progressed deeper into the depths of an aimless bad mood.  This was further agitated by the absurd number of people on the bus itself.  Even mid morning on a Saturday, there was almost no space available, and people were pushing each other through the door trying to get on.  My goal for today’s adventure was to spend time shooting the inner workings of the Guangzhou bus station, located almost an hour from my apartment.  Crammed within a bus of crying children and deafening phones, I began to loose track of why I had desired this trip in the first place.

Arriving in a more central location, the driver informed us that we all had to get off, despite being nowhere near the terminal.  I was furious, but the walk did a world of good, and the unwarranted fury quickly left.  Within 20 minutes, I was standing inside the dark of the bus terminal shooting away.  I like this spot because it reminds me of home.  There is something about the claustrophobic filth, the sensation that I might not be completely safe, which reminds me of Penn station, or possibly the Port Authority terminal in Manhattan.  It was easily 10 degrees hotter in the station than it was outside, and a number of people gave me dirty looks while I tried to pick up the feeling of this world.

Moving away from the depths of the bus terminal, I went above ground to the entrance of the East Railway Station.  I am drawn to this place, and often find myself here when things have been bothering me.  Something about the Cathedralesque metal work.  I’m not implying that I’m a religious man, and this is certainly not a place of worship, but it is a point of exodus.  I enjoy watching the thousands of people that transfer through this spot.  Migrants on their way between jobs, business people heading for Hong Kong, and the typical lot that frequent bus and train terminals.  I feel safe in these places of limbo.

I spent a fair amount of time underneath this lattice of iron, and a number of people watched as I tried to grasp the feeling I had in one spot or another.  In one particular picture, you can see a man looking above, trying to spot what I might be looking at.  I was actually looking at him, and the effect entertained me to no end.  Feeling sound of mind once more, I headed out to continue with the day.

This entry was posted in Daily Life and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *