Quote of the Moment
"All really great things happen in slow and inconspicuous ways." Leo Tolstoy


Monday, 1 February 2016

Day 2 - The Perils of Sleep

Some people, I am sure, are able to concentrate on little or no sleep. If you are one of these people I an glad and more than a little jealous. Maybe it is simply a matter of will that I lack, but for me, a poor night's sleep can be disastrous and extremely debilitating. This is the peril which faced me last night at 1 am. Despite being on holiday and seemingly free to choose my active hours, Sarah is not, and Sarah has to wake at 5:45 each morning. The result, well, a late start to the day's proceedings and a general sense of unsettledness.

The Day Today

Well in some ways despite the loss of the morning I have achieved many of the objectives I set out to do. The various domestic tasks were done or begun. I did a little bit of work, making the necessary arrangements for an author interview for my class. And I have visited the Shanghai Museum. Once this is done, I think some more quality Fallout time is in order!

The Shanghai Museum

I have visited the Shanghai Museum before. Last time I was here I wanted more. This time, less so. It almost sums up some of the cultural frustrations I have with China. There is lots of content, but the contextual understanding of each exhibit is almost entirely missing. You feel like the words in English next to an item should tell you more than just names and dynasties and that so-and-so was a "good calligraphist" (this is an actual quote). Something is missing, and I don't understand what.

That said, as a superficial immersion into historical Chinese culture I have seen nothing better. It is free, but there are limits to the numbers which can enter which in turn can cause long queues.

Despite my frustrations, I do think I enjoy this museum. The paintings along are worth the trip. There is something of the contradiction between simplicity and detail which really draws me in to the scene of many of the works. And for that I often found myself willing the timed lights to stay on a little longer so I could follow this brush-stroke slowly with my eyes to it's terminus.

 The Day Tomorrow

Tomorrow may have more of the similar... Domestic-work, work-work (hopefully the last I will need to do for a week or so), a museum and some gaming.
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