Plans

Nicholas Quirke was excited by making plans and the prospect of more travel on 21 August 2020 but slightly unnerved by the short amount of time to prepare. He was going to go south again to see and capture some more outstanding scenery. There were still other plans on the agenda for his life in Beijing including seeing something at the Beijing Film Festival. Most performances were sold out, but his attention was grabbed by a documentary about the choreographer, Merce Cunningham and Peng helped him to secure a ticket. The visit to the theatre the night before had also given Peng a taste for live performance and he was keen to see Michael Frayan’s ‘Copenhagen’ at the National Theatre Company of China’s. Nicholas was a little reluctant to see another western play in Chinese, particularly such a wordy tour-de-force,, but as they made the effort to cycle out to the theatre to get him a ticket, which could not be booked online, he gave in. It was a nice day, and he appreciated the cycle and exercise. The box office suffered the same problems in issuing a ticket to a laowai as there seemed to be no way of recording his passport number. They waited while technologies tried to resolve the issue but it proved too complex and they were sent on their way with the ticket reserved till it was corrected. Peng sourced a nearby cafe which was located in an office block and they both sat and worked Booking flights, trains and hotels, though he was lacking refreshment as the cafe unusually served his jasmine tea with milk. They were interrupted by a call from the theatre to advise they could issue him with a seat if they returned to theatre. It was on the way home and they stopped of and he collected and paid for the ticket. The day had completely slipped away from them and the impression they had, after eating their takeaway supper, sharing some secrets and watching a nasty German thriller, ‘Cut Off’, was of not much happening The reality was though that a whole new travel Itinerary and Beijing social life had been planned and organised and had left them tired and ready for sleep.

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