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Archives for July, 2016


July 31st, 2016

A hot and sunny summer day meant it was definitely time to go adventuring in the Chilterns. So last Saturday I set of a not particularly adventurous adventure from Henley to Wallingford and back again.

This is a lush meadow heading out of Henley. So many flowers and bugs!


I’ve visited Wallingford a couple of times in the past. It’s a pleasant market town just over the Thames south of Oxford. It’s most interesting features are the bridge, ruined castle, and this, the town hall. A local pub was having a “lure party”. I guess this is to do with Pokemon Go and not fishing.


It was so hot that I completely ran out of water on the return trip to Henley. Luckily I managed to find a stranger to fill up my bottle. The dryness and the ripening crops do make the fields a nice yellow colour though.


Nick the Art Collector

July 24th, 2016

I’ve been decorating my home recently! These two oil paintings I bought on canvases from some student art market. The framer was a bit snooty about the quality, and actually I paid more to get them framed than the paintings cost originally, but they liven up the walls and I’m no art critic…


This one is a painting on rice paper I bought when I was in China back in April. Again I got it framed separately back in the UK. The lady in the shop didn’t speak English and my Chinese isn’t great, but I gathered it’s a painting of Suzhou in autumn by a local man who is old, famous, and blind. Hanging in my hallway now: looks really good.


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Don’t Look Down

July 12th, 2016

I had one last day in Shanghai after my holiday before flying back home. I arrived really early on the overnight train, so I had a great opportunity to beat the queue and go up the Oriental Pearl Tower which I had shunned before.


I went to the “middle” globe (which is actually quite near the top). You can pay extra to go to the very top globe but I doubt the view is much better and it is a lot more. The view is quite good, despite the smog. On one side you can see all the old colonial buildings and on the other all the modern skyscrapers.


Underneath the middle global is this exciting glass-floored observation gallery. It was a bit unsettling actually. Although I managed to venture onto the glass to take a few photos of my feet.


The tower definitely looks better lit up by night. The grey-tower on grey-smog look during the day isn’t great.