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Tag Archives Chinatown


Walking by Washington Square, to catch

a cable car on the Powell-Mason line

to take us to our Geary Street hotel,

we paused to watch some Chinese elders

at Tai Chi on the lawns before the church –

their graceful and controlled aggression.

We passed a raised bed – the label told us –

of ‘Collinsia heterophylla

aka Purple Chinese Houses –

so-called because of the pagoda shape

of the blooms.’ In the middle of the bed,



She is scooting on the South Bank, her four years
sailing without mishap through the crowds –
multi-national, multi-ethnic, mixed race
– like a skilled UN negotiator.
We stop – her choice – at the Galloper.
She rides sedately, grinning, on a painted
wooden horse. We stop again – our choice –
to watch an Australian with a travelled
face and lived-in voice reprise Houdini’s
cabinet trick. She is unimpressed
but enjoys the fifty metre sand pit
beyond the BFI. At the Tate,
she watches a brief video –