CHINA 2012 part four

Tuesday 27th November

On a plane to Hebi, in the Henan Province.  Concerts are going very well; we only have 3 more scheduled.  Today is a day off.  Temps have dropped dramatically.  Most days are sunny and in the 40s now.

The musicians have bonded really well and the music is cohesive, tight, and we’re feeling the freedom to step out and jam within the forms.  Our Chinese is hysterical.  Bad, that is.  A handful of phrases, plus ridiculous pantomimes, must serve to get us through all types of situations.  People here are nice; they must find us quirky and exotic, even oddly attractive.

Yesterday, we were in Shaoxing, a city of 6 million and the center of the textile industry of China.  We cabbed to the silk market and shopped.  I had an absolute blast bargaining and buying exquisite shawls of fine quality silk and pashmina. Unbelievable prices.  And, we even found a Starbucks Coffee:  my Grande Latte was a drop of water to a man dying of thirst.  Paco broke his (generic) reading glasses and…we found a Walmart—-Culture Shock!  No fat people!!  No reading glasses,either.  I suggested we enter an upscale boutique and, for $8 American, he was fitted out wonderfully, with eye exam and great service, besides.  Americans have a great deal to learn from the Chinese people.