To let Atsuko work in peace, I got the rail-replacement bus service to Trafalgar Square to see some of the New Year celebrations this morning. There were thousands of people squeezed between the fountains all hoping to see some authentic Chinese dancing and music. I managed to get a side view of the stage and LED screens and stood for a full hour listening to speeches of thanks to various ‘distinguished guests’ and sponsors before anything happened. I finally saw a small amount of the lion performance on the screens before I got bored and left; it all seemed more about business than culture – the sponsors included various beers, Cathay Pacific and Kung Fu Panda 2, a film made by the multi-million pound American film studio…!?
To be honest, I’m sure if I had been patient enough and had a better view, it would have been a great show. On the way home, I passed this Chinese restaurant in Elephant and Castle with a sign that really made me smile. Not only was ‘Chinese’ separated, the message was only for the benefit of people inside the restaurant.