Back to my second home in Zhaoqing. travel blog

Denise and Qianyu with the marching band.

Qianyu's friend and her Mum.

Paifang gate, packed with people.

Hot air balloons at Paifang.

Hot air balloons at Paifang.

Crazy buzzing crowd.

Crazy buzzing crowd.

Crazy buzzing crowd.

Crazy buzzing crowd.

Lion in the city square.

Lions on the loose in the square.

Lions on the loose in the square.

Lions on the loose in the square.

Lions on the loose in the square.

Lions on the loose in the square.

One of the floats from the parade.

Flames in a hot air balloon.

Bundles of balloons.

Balloons large and small.

Flying free.

Flying free.

A touch of blue.

Nurses on parade.

Masks on banners.

Masks on banners.

Poice had their work cut out for them, just on crowd control.

Beautiful ladies, all willing to pose for photos.

With Qianqian and her little kindy friend.

More balloons.

The costumes are beautiful.

The costumes are beautiful.

More lovely ladies.

Aren't they lovely?

What a gorgeous litle girl.

What a gorgeous litle girl.

Flowers around Paifang Square.

Flowers around Paifang Square.

Flowers around Paifang Square.

Fire in the balloon.

Sign of the times - drones buzzing around.

Sign of the times - drones buzzing around.

Sign of the times - drones buzzing around.

Flames in the balloon.

Flames in the balloon.

All the little girls.

Qianyu with her lacy toffee.

Another friend, with her Mummy.

Denise trying to pinch Qianqian's toffee!

Yummy.

Dancing queen.

Down it goes.

Me and my new friend.


We managed to get down to Paifang Square. It was a huge mission. We had to take detours at stages, to get around the crowds, as in some places there was no getting through them!! So, with a lot of pushing, shoving, apologizing, and just keeping on going, we got there!

The whole place was a heaving mass of humanity! But, what an awesome experience. The atmosphere was just mind blowing!

We hung out there for the rest of the afternoon, alternately sitting on a bench, and wandering for photos.

Late in the day, I met a lady called Summer Xia, who belongs to a local photography group. I told her about my camera club trying to find a sister club, and that we had got bogged down by trying to find someone who also spoke English, as well as sharing a love of photography.

Summer studied in the UK and also in the US, and is a professor at the Zhaoqing University, teaching International Culture. We talked for quite a while, and exchanged wechat contacts, before she finally headed off to home.

I am excited to have met her, as this might just be the contact we were hoping for.

Wandering about we came across a group of police officers sitting on a bench, having a well-earned rest. As it appeared they were off-duty, I got Denise to ask if I could have a photo with one of them. And sure enough, got a picture with a policewoman. And one of the younger guys actually spoke to me in English. Unreal.

We decided to go and get some dinner, before the crowds hit, and went to a restaurant on the top floor of the Star Lake Mall. Good food, and quick service. By the time we left there were many groups of people sitting on couches, waiting for tables. So, our timing was perfect!

The other girls were going to watch the free rock concert on the city square, so Denise, Qianqian and I said our goodbyes, and headed for our concert.



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