Of all the countless islands of Indonesia I decided to visit two: Sumatra and Bali (Lombok doesn’t count as I was there for half a day only just to hop on a plane). Below are some impressions of Sumatran part of my trip.

I owe huge thanks to Rudy, the greatest ever couchsurfing host from Medan and to his flatmate William… It is them (and their jolly bunch of friends) I had a very soft landing in Indonesia and I got introduced to many a local custom. The care they took of me even felt too much at some point but only until I watched some videos of people getting mugged in many cruel ways at night (especially by guys on electric scooters)… It was only then that I understood better why my friends would always give their buddies a ride back right to their door and wait until they safely got in… And the security of Indonesian Chinese (and…

Street art

Shanghai is stunning with its dimensions, noise, density of everything and everybody… There is no free space to be found, no matter day or night. Even when you take the last subway you cannot just sigh and sink into your own thoughts. You have to think collectively here, immersing yourself into the stream of people flowing one way or the other. One of the most amazing things is the lack of accidents between the participants of the traffic, even though nobody respects traffic signs or regulations – bicycles and scooters dash through the pavement and cars hardly ever respect the red light. I kind of tried to collide with cyclists and motorcyclists rushing through MY pavement. And I almost got it, it’s just that the very last moment they twist and dodge like some evil snake – they don’t even touch you and there is no way you can let go of your frustration. You can only…

Before I actually get to Shanghai I visit Zhenjiang (check the previous post), the town that I could call my hometown with so many friends living there. It’s just that Chinese home towns are better not to be left alone for more than a month, otherwise you might feel lost when you get back there. The places I was filming in 2010 have got all covered with skyscrapers, some boroughs have been demolished, others built anew… Luckily nothing has changed about Fei and his family – Auntie “Eat a little more” is still in good shape, Uncle Big Belly is still trying to convince me into drinking a few and Fei is still the same loony artist, with his head covered with more tangled hair than before. I arrive in Zhenjiang for a job interview (the whole job thing will eventually not work out but that’s ok) and I could not even dream of a better timing. Picture…