Spring Parking

Nicholas Quirke was determined to visit Jing Shan Park on 8 April 2021 to catch the trees blossoming again. It was one of his enduring images of Beijing and having another opportunity to see colour of this ancient park was not to be missed. He had not done any of his weekly chores the previous day and early morning was spent catching up on work and experimenting with a new device to attach his GoPro to. He was still waiting for his to be repaired and the results were a little unsteady but it fitted round his neck like a necklace rather it being strapped to his body and once he was finished his domestic chores he bestrode a bike and tested it on a 10km cycle and walk around the park. It was a beautiful spring day and the ride across the city was worth it. The park looked beautiful and at it’s most oriental and though the footage he took on time lapse of his two hours looked shaky and passed too quickly it gave some sense of the park, the plants, the pavilions and panorama and he kept filming to the bitter end. He had arranged to meet Peng for a late lunch and afternoon tea before he went to work and as it was equidistant between park and school they met in Wangfujing Street and ate at a mall. As he had finally after 58 hours broken his fast he was eating a minimal amount and had an avocado salad with extra avocado, which turned out to be mostly kale. It was always his experience that western style restaurants were on the whole miserly with portions and costly and it was no different here though he was grateful too be chewing once again. He spent the remainder of the afternoon in Teasure at APM before cycling to a lesson with Harry and Willis where for once Willis was attentive and worked hard, though once again, with most classes the attention started to flag after 90 minutes. There was an elastic tone to the movie they watched, a subdued Australian thriller called ‘The Dry’. He found it utterly compelling, the dry and arid landscape permeating every shot. Its was with the films sense of death clinging to him that he took to his bed and hoped that the feeling of doom was not an omen for his visit the next morning to the familiar Exit/Entry bureau. The mood led to a troubled nights sleep.

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