A visit to Jingdezhen with Bo Gyllensvärd, in 1992

Sunday 20 September 1992
To Nanchang by Bus

The bus was ordered to pick us up at seven thirty AM outside of the Hotel and arrived in time. The road was much better than I remember from last time we went this way. Everywhere new houses were being built. Along long stretches there seemed to have been planted trees along the roadsides. It felt like you were driving through a never ending alley. The villages we drove through were barely recognizable from last time.

Well in Nanchang the driver asked for 400 Yuan extra to take us to the Nanchang Museum. Since we were quite tired and honestly a bit fed up on porcelain which would raise much more question then answers, we abstained and lazed around through the afternoon and evening in the new terminal building at Nanchang airport. It appeared as if time expected to be needed to bring us here had been estimated on the high side. Maybe we can reduce the margins slightly another time.

An important politicians surrounded by family, friends and a following courtship of perhaps thirty people was quickly waved through airport formalities and into the VIP room. An orthodox communist with party membership card and horn-rimmed glasses noticed this injustice and angrily went to full frontal attack with the airport staff, waving Mao's little red book in his right hand, arguing with security guards and seated spectators who treated him politely but disinterested.

No doubt China is changing, or perhaps becoming again what it has always been.

This is my diary as it was written in Jingdezhen and Beijing the 4-24 September 1992,
after an invitation and journey to study the recent findings from the excavations of the Imperial Ming Kilns at Zhushan and other aspects of the ceramic history of China, in and around the city of Jingdezhen. My travel mates beside professor Bo Gyllensvärd were Jarl Vansvik and Erik Engel. My eternal gratitude goes to them, Dr Liu Xinyuan and all our friends at the Archaeological Institute of Jingdezhen. Text and photos on this web page are copyright as published © Jan-Erik Nilsson, Gotheborg.com, Sweden 2014.