China street life

My stay in China was very brief just 6 days but 6am every morning I was up (jet lag) and walking the streets. This was my favourite place for breakfast, the street food is amazing and cheap, clearly many people eat on the street rather than at home. The bamboo steamers are full of steamed bread/dumpling type things, each layer has different ones with different fillings but having only a few words of Chinese I just pointed and got what I was given. The fillings varied from chopped cabbage with lovely seasoning to sausage-meat. I can still taste the dumplings in my memory they were simply heavenly and cost 10 p each, two was a good belly full.


cabbage stuffed dumpling 10p served in poly bag and eaten hot whilst walking, yum yum. There has to be a market for these in the UK.IMG_8008

more street food , I never found out what was in the big jars but they were kept hot with food inside.


there were lots of these little street kitchen buggies some running off charcoal most off LPG. The LPG deliveries come by scooter and a scooter carries 6 bottles at speed.IMG_7875Here are a few scooter pics, no helmets, always loaded up, sometimes with 3 or 4 people aboard


no helmet and on the phone through busy town traffic, the death toll on the roads must be high.



Market, see the guy in the back he is the butcher

IMG_7844Here he is



Then there were the street markets where folk clearly walk or bus in from the countryside with two baskets of produce sell them and head home. I remember stories of my great grandma doing exactly this with her butter in Cumbria. Later on I would see the little veg plots everywhere by the side of the road

IMG_7866 IMG_7865 IMG_7862

The veg are sold by weight and each seller has a little yard arm for weighing out their greens.IMG_7871 IMG_7869

banana seller


I don’t know what this guy was selling or how far he had pushed his barrow but we walked along the same road together for about 20 minutes at 6am and he was going as fast as I was, it’s hard graft. IMG_8010 IMG_8017

I love wandering back alleys like this and I felt totally safe. Apparently whilst pickpocketing is not unknown physical attack  is very rare. You see lone children, women and old folk walking on their own late at night and early morning.

One morning I was out early enough to see the butcher starting work, a whole carcass dismembered on the street. I guess there is no need for refrigeration if it is butchered, sold and cooked in a short space of time.IMG_8020 IMG_8023

A rainy morning so the newspaper people were sorting their stick in the open all night autobank.


most of the jobs that we use machines for they use people. There is as far as I could gather no unemployment. People sweep the streets overnight with besom brooms.


There are clearly people living very very hard lives this chap had clearly been into town sold his produce and was sleeping on the street before heading for home.IMG_8005

most folk in the city live in these 1960’s style tower blocks, on the outskirts of Guiyang a whole new city of high tech modern tower blocks is shooting up. I have never seen so much building in one place.IMG_7841


2 Responses to China street life

  1. TrevorML December 5, 2013 at 10:37 am #

    Hi Robin… you commented that there did not seem to be any unemployment…

  2. Robin Wood December 5, 2013 at 2:28 pm #

    Thanks for that Trevor. I am surprised that The Wall Street Journal publishes work that is filled with so many leading adjectives which do not necessarily correlate with the stats they refer to. Does the journal use terms like nose-bleed-inducing levels when referring to inequality in the US and UK which are at very similar levels?

    How about this for leading language “high savings by the rich driving torrid investment and crimping consumption.” can you imagine them saying that about the US or UK during a growth period?

    I am sure Obama or Cameron would be rather envious of 8% annual growth in GDP and if it applied to the UK or US it would not be described as the “current downturn in growth” the whole article is run through with strongly biased language of a kind I am not accustomed to seeing in decent UK newspapers.

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