The city of Guangzhou is a place of contrasts. The roads are filled with expensive luxury cars but the sidewalks are even fuller with people walking, pulling carts and riding old bicycles that are rigged to carry loads of wood, water bottles, boxes, etc.
The trees, flowers and vegetation in the city are green, beautiful and tropical in nature but the skies are a gray/brown color and the sun is hidden behind a think blanket of unregulated pollution.
The retail prices on food and other items are seemingly low and advertisements are alluring yet the expendable cash of most of the people seems to be even lower. Money and time is not wasted on extravagant things and treats. This is quickly evident to me as I observe the street sweeper methodically do his job in the front of a relatively empty Starbucks coffee shop.
The poor, run-down, crumbling houses and apartments cower in the shadows of the new glass and steel skyscrapers all around them. Both of them in their differences speaking loudly of an ideology that looks good at the outset and works well for a season, but over time deteriorates into ruins.