A Season in Red: My Great Leap Forward in the New China

A Season in Red: My Great Leap Forward in the New China

A Season in Red: My Great Leap Forward in the New China

A Season in Red: My Great Leap Forward in the New China

Synopsis

In a country of communist slogans and transvestite nightclubs, where teen advice columns are screened by government censors and employees live together in 'Big Brother' style apartment buildings, Kirsty Needham discovers there's more to being a 'foreign expert' on a Chinese newspaper than she ever could have imagined. A fresh, fascinating and unique glimpse into life in modern day China.

Excerpt

Sanlitun Lu, Beijing. Partying people spilled out of the bars in that other Party’s republic, and into the dark dirty alleys. It was more like a maze than a thoroughfare. I took midnight bearings from the giant beer mug that glowed on the corner of Workers’ Stadium Road and headed south to where the shadows hid a gauntlet of blue jackets. ‘DVD?’ demanded a crimson-cheeked entrepreneur with a bulging sack at her feet. ‘Yangrou chuan?’ implored the next wizened face, his scraps of spicy, fatty mutton roasting on coals. I slipped into the black, around rubble-strewn corners, as old neighbours disappeared into old brick apartment blocks. Metal rockers in vintage sidecar motorcycles rumbled by.

Ahead was the roar of a dusty, loud mixing pot. Neon shacks that overflowed as young Chinese and foreigners converged on the street to unwind. the crowd gasped for air on hot summer nights like this, and sucked up warm Yanjing beer as a substitute. ‘Ganbei!’ cried a friend with a bottle in his hand. ‘DVD?’ called the shadows. I was . . .

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