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Time, Reflection, Time

Shanghai: graffiti bombed

Today’s office is that moment in time waiting for friends to wake.

Our guesthouse lies half way between the bustle of Tokyo and our final destination on this field trip – Chongqing. Mentally I’ve already put down my coffee, set my laptop aside, and negociated my way across the courtyard to the red laquer door-within-a-door that separates the tranquility of here from Beijing, a short walk through the houtong and onto the Forbidden Palace. Jetlag is a usually a decent enough excuse to partake in early hours excursions through the city but with only a one hour time difference there is no excuse.

The two checkboxes for us being here – visiting colleagues in the Beijing design studio, and sharing recent research findings with local members of the fourth estate, are already ticked.

This courtyard breakfast meeting started five minutes ago. Or at least on paper it did – the rest of the team worked late and they deserve a decent’s nights sleep. Eventually a door opens, and a body walks out into the sunshine. Fresh coffee is poured, the working day starts.