Map of the local Songjiang areaWent for a walk this morning before I began work. I am staying in Songjiian, which is situated west of the city of Shanghai. The green dot on the map marks the spot.

It was quite cold this morning. I packed for milder temperatures however during the last couple of days a cold snap has hit the region. It was much warmer last week. The cherry and peach blossoms have been out in great numbers during the last week.

There are quite a few parks in Songjiang, as the map above indicates, and taking a walk is quite pleasant although I must admit that I miss my bicycle. There are dedicated bike lanes in Songjiang, separated by well constructed median strips which are neatly planted with manicured shrubs. Next time I stay here I will borrow a bicycle.

Songjiang, Shanghai, China.

A couple of people said hello to me during my walk, giving me the chance to practise my Chinese. I can survive however I need to brush up. I also regret not bringing a couple of texts with me so I can test myself in my spare time. I can recognise more Chinese characters this time around. It is neat being able to interpret characters here and there, especially on the local metro lines.

Songjiang, Shanghai, China.

It is good being here. I can concentrate on my research and preparation for a number of workshops that are coming up  in Singapore, Surabaya (Indonesia) and Newcastle during May. I am staying in a 3 storey home and I have an entire floor to myself with two bedrooms, a bathroom and a study. I shall be in China for about 4 weeks. I have also had the chance to tinker with this web site. A pleasure for me.

Songjiang, Shanghai, China.

I had a hot brew at the end of my walk, a chance to practise Chinese once more. I then dropped by a small store that sells imported Taiwanese products. I picked up some bottles of drink as well as two small cans of Taiwan Beer which I may imbibe later this evening. Why not? I like Taiwan Beer. It is an acquired taste but there is nothing quite like downing a Taiwan Beer or two on a hot, humid evening, sitting by the side of the road in Banqiao, Taipei in Taiwan, eating a meal together with friends. I might post about that later.

Songjiang, Shanghai, China.

Songjiang, Shanghai, China.