Concrete palm fronds erupt from a police state hotel tower. The now-familiar cancerous polyps of the Oriental TV Tower in Pudong, joined now by an army of post-modernist, post-rational confections. A world's worth of architectural adornments have been plagiarized at random and plastered without order onto the skyline. At night it all winks and flashes like a cut-rate Vegas floor show.
And this is the future. I suppose I could get used to it, but I'd really rather not. I'd just as soon get back on the plane and find a place where trees are not yet ironic design elements.
I follow a series of imaginatively mangled signs.
"Bund Sightseeing tunnel is mysterous."
"Feost for the eyes via a single bund sightseeing tunnel."
I treat myself to a freakish run under the Huangpu River in the Bund Sightseeing Tunnel (30 yuan gets you a ride through a subway tunnel tarted up by a third-rate lightshow).
There's an almost willful tackiness to this place.