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

By Kirsty Needham | Go to book overview

13.
Gaining a
Name, Losing Face

I drifted along Sanlitun Lu to the sound of a cicada chorus. Little yellow flower blossoms fell from the sky and stuck in the grooves of the pavement. Bicycle carts passed by slowly carrying heavy loads of bottled water. I didn’t notice the green uniforms of the omnipresent PLA any more. They melded into the trees.

I noticed the ringing of bells on bicycles, the lunchtime chatter in French, German, Russian and Spanish from outdoor cafes. Silver birds with long blue tails darting across the road. I watched parents pick up children from the international school, then eat at Le Petit Paris where the tables had red-checked cloths and the tuna salad came with quail eggs. I passed the faded pink UNICEF building, the heart of global compassion.

I was heading north for a meeting with one of the more influential men in town. Past the Spanish and Algerian embassies where the guards stood frozen. Eyes straight

-224-

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

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Prologue - Laowai, 2004 ix
  • 1 - Red Fever 1
  • 2 - Yellow Dust 12
  • 3 - China Daily 35
  • 4 - Certified Expert Foreigners 59
  • 5 - Dragon Gorge 70
  • 6 - Sars and Propaganda 86
  • 7 - A Captive Audience 102
  • 8 - Sky 128
  • 9 - The Campaign against Youth Spiritual Pollution 153
  • 10 - Street Scenes 180
  • 11 - When Red Means Go 194
  • 12 - Hot in the City 208
  • 13 - Gaining a Name, Losing Face 224
  • 14 - Checking out 247
  • Acknowledgments 271
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