​An Australian Creative Director and Strategist fumbles through life in America. Live from New York.

An Australian Creative Director and Strategist fumbles through life New York City.

Filtering by Tag: beijing

A shoulder to cry on

From a close friend, who is an excellent writer (and definitely my favourite Reiter).


On Tuesday, all China Daily employees were asked to wear black, white or gray in honor of a fellow employee who died last week from a brain hemorrhage. Li Xing was based in the United States, but started her career in Beijing in 1981, when the newspaper opened. 

She worked in many departments throughout her 30 years, and eventually rose up in the ranks to become the chief US correspondent and assistant editor-in-chief. 

I would say it was a definite shock to everyone here that she died. 

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The calm before the storm (ironically).

I’m sitting at home in the dark, watching a huge electrical storm fly across Beijing. It’s bucketing rain, and the sky is alive with white flashes, which move through the canyons between the buildings. More impressive than the light, though, is the way the sound moves. Thunder crashes, and you hear it in two waves: the real, organic sound of the actual hit followed by the dull, bass driven movement as the reverberations bounce slowly and endlessly through the city, passing from building to building.

I’m about to enter what is probably the busiest two weeks of my career so far. And this massive storm is actually very peaceful. The city stops moving when it storms: people scurry for cover, the car horns fade and the people just…watch. Looking out my window, I can see four other people doing what I’m doing: watching, contemplating the power of nature.

It’s amazing that only an act so violent and dominating can silence this city, stopping the never ending movement in it’s tracks. And tomorrow will probably be a clear and beautiful day. Here is hoping, anyway.

What a weekend.

Enjoy my weekend run down in bullet point form, as I am in a list oriented mood:


  • Brunch at great NZ cafe (with the only great coffee in Beijing) with the Charles clan
  • AFL Training: a good kickaround in 39 degree heat = feeling very Australian
  • Rugby: Carn the Reds! What a match! Hang on, my mobile’s ringing…dinner, tonight? At Beijing’s finest eatery? Don’t mind if I do…
  • Dinner: At Maison Boulud. Perfect Whiskey Sour. Perfect Steak Tartare. Perfect medium rare Wagyu steak. Perfect Australian wine. Perfect company.


  • Shopping at Uniqlo (how is this not in Australia yet?)
  • Squash (and my first win)
  • Watching X-Men: First Class (not bad, with moments of brilliance. James McAvoy should be in every film from now on)

A bloody top weekend. Now, Monday, where the air has returned to polluted as FUCK. Well, I’m of to GZ.

The Week In Recap.

Well, fuck me. What a week.

It is busier than I’ve ever experienced: at the beginning of the week, I honestly thought trouble would brew as a result of dropping some of the many balls in the air. But no, we got there, despite my Senior Art Director going on leave (how dare he!). So I have managed to do two jobs during the busiest period - very helpfully supported by the team here, who are awesome.

But now it’s Friday. Sure, it sucks massively because she left today, and won’t be back for five whole weeks (and I miss her already). But Italy is awesome, and I’d kill to be there with her - next time, babeh.

But the work is under control. And the team is happy. And I have a cold beer, and I’m listening to Lido Shuffle by Boz Scaggs. BOOM.

Life, at this moment, is all good.

Stay tuned.

Beijing will show you rain.

So after 10 or so polluted-as-fuck days, Beijing turned on the waterworks yesterday evening. BIG TIME.

I’ve been hearing a fair bit of whinging from Sydney about the rain of late: my friends, you ain’t seen rain until you’ve seen a proper Beijing downpour.

And now, the air has dramatically cleared.