Two days ago, Yumiko and I arrived in China for a 3 month tour. We are focused on art, life, and biz here in Shanghai and are very excited to be here.
The trip started off immediately with a MB: Shanghai studio tour by the top executives of Sega China. We were still recovering from jet lag, fortunately so were our friends from Secret Level/Sega who were also along for the show and tell at MB. Later that night we went to a business dinner at the very fancy "Shangra La", courtesy of Sega, and were treated to great food, some cultural dance (much better than the happy birthday song at The Olive Garden), and a few fabulous drinks. There was a Prime Minister of whoknowswhere so we had to go through the metal detectors to get in. All in all, it was an awesome first day. I really enjoyed spending time with the artists of MB Shanghai as well. Strange to think that MB has been doing biz here for so long and this is my first visit. I wish I would have come sooner. Shanghai is a very exciting place.
Yesterday, a few of the talented guys from MB Shanghai brought us down to the gallery district of Zhongtan Road. The area has a very underground art sort of feel and there were a number of nice pieces on display at the various galleries. We visited about 20 galleries over the afternoon and explored some of the city. We ended up at a nice restaurant at the end and enjoyed some authentic chinese food. Fortunately no one ordered anything with eyeballs...well, except for the prawns. I got to try a lot of fruits that I had never tasted or seen too. New experiences, flavors, and sights have all been inspiring.
There are a few other silly observations so far...
1. The Shanghainese drivers will honk at anyone and anything. There are more horns going off here than anywhere I have ever been. In the USA when one goes to cross the street, we are taught to look both ways. In Shanghai I have to look both ways at least fifteen times each time I cross the street. Cars will barrel through the intersection full of pedestrians without even stopping. I have learned to walk at my own risk. The bikes will run me over too if I am not careful. I can still hear honking horns as I write this and I am on the 28th floor at MB Shanghai right now.
2. No one gets out of the way of ambulances, like they do in the US. I was watching people ignore the sirens today and was bewildered that no one cared to move out of the way of an emergency vehicle.
3. The water here makes the water in Mexico seem like it came from the fountain of youth. Holy moly...I have no idea what they put in it, or what got into it...I am afraid to ask...bottled water is the only way.
So far, there are some things I am really happy about.
1. Everyone has been very nice, and helpful too.
2. The food has been great...and is super cheap. I took all of MB Shanghai to dinner for the same price as Yumiko and I getting the same dinner in San Francisco. I am a foody so I love the fact that I can eat all sorts of things and not break the bank! Yummy breakfast on the street costs about 35 cents.
3. There are a ton of artists here. Just one of the gallery districts is bigger than the art areas of San Fran or LA. I can't wait to see the rest.
4. We have plenty of time to explore the city.
5. The insects are crazy here.
6. MB Shanghai has a new kitten! "little rabbit" is her name. She has devil horns.
Anyway, here are some pics from our adventures so far...I will update again soon.
PS...watch out for the Chinese garbage monkey. He will get you when you least expect!!