CHINA   1986
Return to All my Pictures page

I visited China in October 1986 as the guest of the Academica Sinica, now called the Chinese Academy of Sciences. I visited the University in Shanghai with Dr Wei Ping Liu but spent most of the time there in the lab of Professor Zhou in Chengdu in Sichuan in the centre of China. I finished with a brief visit to Beijing.
      While in Chengdu I went on a visit to Jiuzhaigou in the mountains to the Northwest of Chengdu.
      These pictures were taken as colour slides using a Praktica 35mm camera with an extra 135mm lens. The Agfa film gives too much magenta if poorly exposed and this has worsened over 25 years buried in a cupboard. The slides were scanned in using a Plustek scanner linked to Vuescan [at 1200dpi] and cropped and corrected for very bad colour in Photoshop.

For pictures go to: Shanghai          Chengdu in Sichuan         Jiuzhaigou in the mountains         Beijing

Top of Page
Top of Page      SHANGHAI

The famous Shanghai Bund; see picture below for what it looks like 25 years later

  The Bund in Shanghai in 2010
  The bund
  View of Shanghai from the ferry on the Huangpu river
  View from my balcony in Shanghai
  The only panda I saw in China, but he was playing a trumpet
  TOP of SHANGHAI         TOP of PAGE



Top of Page
Chengdu is the capital city of Sichuan, renowned for its very spicy food. I stayed in the Academica Sinica campus. I was the guest of Professor Zhou who had translated my book The Biochemistry of Methylotrophs. I spent about 4 weeks there, which included a week going to Jiuzhaigou.
  Chairman Mao at the cross roads in Chengdu
  The Institute where I worked with Prof. Zhou
  The lab members. Prof Zhou on right; Zheng on my left; Flame in red; friend on my left             Prof Zhou's family
  The main road [Remnin Nanlu from Institute to town centre. On the left is the Jinjiang hotel - one of the few locall big hotels. For pics of hotels in present day Chengdu Click here
  The big crossroads near the Institute
  Same crossroads
  The duck market
  Meat market
  Fresh chickens
  Weighing chillies

On the way to market

  The main temple in Chengdu
  Residential road near Institute
  View from my window Local ladies
  Haircut Sleeping
  Veggie market

Comic book library

  The start of the long trek down Remnin Nanlu to town or to hotel for evening coca cola My wonderful bicycle
  The girls at the flower market
  TOP of Chengdu pictures         TOP OF PAGE  


The Map shows Jiuzhaigou at the top [North] and our starting point at Chengdu in the South. The journey took two long days in a Toyota minibus. The department secretary [Zheng] spoke good English and one of the students [translated as Flame] was also fairly good. The others new very little English. Our first task on the way was to buy me a bowl and chopsticks as these were not provided at eating places where we planned to stop. We had one overnight stop. JiuZhaigou is at about 10,000 feet and on the way we drove over 13,000 ft. I had altitude sickness after that at our overnight stop. The local people were involved in agriculture; on the high Tibetan grasslands the main activity was herding Yak. This meant that we had too much yak milk, yoghurt, cheese and meat. Jiuzhaigou itself is on a series of very clear often coloured ribbon lakes. I sometimes escaped from our group to go alone down the mountain from the 'hotel' (a series of huts). I was stoned (mild) by boys in one village (I was probably the only European they had seen). The boys were driven off by a friendly soldier I had seen earlier painting. On the return trip our inexperienced driver smashed the sump from the bottom of the engine. Zheng and I hitched a lift in an old minibus piled onto the luggage on the back seat. The floor was awash with petrol from a leaking can.
Our brave travellers. Flame and Zheng on the right
Our minibus at a mountain stop
  The high plateau with yak farmers
  Yurts of the yak herders Children of the yak herders
  Yak herders  
  Some right-of-way problem. I was given a padded coat like those for sleeping in when we arrived in the mountains
  A more usual hold up
  Our lunch stop
  Our lunch
  Zheng and Flame sad yak
  Bridge over one of the small coloured lakes
  One of the lakes
  Having fun
  Friendly girls on one of my expeditions
  Nervously running awy
  one of the villages by my mountain river walk Translation anyone please
  Village where i was attacked with stones by small gang of boys
  My artist rescuer
  Not a comfortable life
  I don't know what is hanging to dry
  Note white prayer flags
  Drying hay
  The peaceful lake at the bottom of my long mountain river walk where i sat and ate mooncakes
  I think these are limestone pond edges in the river; this valley is called Limestone valley.
  On the way home
  Barbour jacket
  A yak boy at work
  Home on the range
  A plough
  Yakboy Bold adventurer
  I came to hate this bus, stinking of petrol, crouching in the back on the luggage. Because the driver was told I was interested in birds he braked violently at every wagtail in the road. I lost the will to live so no more photos of rest of trip back
     Top of Jiuzhaigou                                                 TOP of PAGE

   TOP of    PAGE
I flew to Beijng for my flight home. I had someone from the microbiology department of the university as my guide. He spent most of the time thrusting reprints of his work at me and trying to get help to publish in UK journals and to visit UK. We visited the great wall. This was the "North Pass" of Juyongguan pass, known as the Badaling. In the afternoon of the 2nd day we went to the Imperial (forbidden) city. I shook off my guide. As I went in I noticed many army lorries driving up to the edge of the city. These later produced thousands of troops dressed in traditional costume for the final day of filming of The Last Emperor by David Lean. Because of this tourists had to leave; I was the last person to leave the city - pushed at the end of spears by laughing soldiers through the great gates before they were slammed shut.
Note on colours: In the Imperial City the sky was bright blue. The buildings also had a lot of blue and magenta. Photoshop seemed to think these were a colour cast and tried to remove them as well as the colour cast caused by Agfa and ageing. So the colours are disappointing
  The great wall of China
  The Imperial Forbidden City
  The Road to the city
  Tianmen Square
  Mao guarding the entrance

Temple of Heaven

  School trip
  The Imperial Palace
  Imperial palace
  Lion guard  
  Pictures below are the soldiers dressed traditionally for shooting of The Last Emperor by David Lean
  TOP OF BEIJING             TOP of PAGE