One night in China... no, no... first night in Shanghai.
Slept well. Woke up early. Anticipating an exciting day ahead.
Breakfast at Yi Cafe, the hotel's 2nd floor restaurant.
Met an American-Korean girl alone next to my table. We chatted.
She said she has traveled to many places and this was one of the finest restaurant she has ever experienced.
Talking about 5-star, the power plug at the Pudong Shangri-la hotel room was international standard. Didn't have to use my universal travel power adapter to charge the camcorder's batteries last night.
Still have time after breakfast before the first official video shooting assignment.
Went back to the riverbank of Huangpu River. This time catpuring the day version of the same place recorded last night, the Bund and the Futuristic City.
Walked to the Pearl Tower and around it. Captured it from every good angle. Many local photographers were stationed around the Pearl Tower offering tourists their services with a wide angle lens. Mine was taken by my assistant, Mr L.
The MOONCAKES! Let's hurry back to the hotel to get the mooncakes. Only RMB118 for 4 pieces with yolk, packed in elegant metal casing. 2 packs for me. 2 packs for Mr L. This is the mid-autumn festival. Gotta have my mooncakes... as in to give it to parents back home.
2pm: The real assignment begins. Assembled the tripod, dolly, video light and the Sony HDR-FX7 High Definition camcorder.
It is an officiating ceremony graced by Hong Kong Actor Francis Ng Chun Yu.
Francis Ng Chun Yu is regarded as one of the best actors in HK today and, along with Anthony Wong and Lau Ching-Wan, was named one of the “Three Great Characters” at the 25th HK International Film Festival.
Whatever that means... I rarely watch Hong Kong movies.
Before the event, I was shocked to hear that there will be 40 press and media people. I wondered how I would jostle with the other videographers for the best angles. What if, during the critical moment, all of us lift our camcorders off the tripod and rush forward to the stage? I dared not imagine.
Upon arrival at the event hall with my Sony HDR-FX7, I walked past a black-leather jacketed, sun-glassed Chinese lady toting a similar camcorder.
She said "Hi!" then in mandarin asked me "Where are you from?".
In mandarin I replied "Singapore. What about you?"
She said "Beijing TV station."
We went our separate ways. Loads of guests and VIPs were streaming in. Gotta capture them in action.
The event went on with a catwalk, a dance, the officiating, lucky draws and games. Counted about 5 videographers, the rest were paper media people. Whew!
At the end of the ceremony, the Singapore media had a private interview session with Francis Ng. That's where we had him do a few poses for our camera. He is so spontanious we fnished the private shoot in less than 5 minutes.
5pm: Got to go. Have to catch the flight to ZhengZhou, Henan, for our next video shooting assignment. Packed my equipment, checked out of Pudong Shangri-la Hotel, squeezed into a taxi and off we go.
This time, only four of us will be travelling together for the rest of the trip, Ms A, Ms M, Mr L and myself.
We headed for Shanghai Hongqiao Airport. The traffic was heavy. It is the peak hour. Will we be late? It is already 15 minutes and we are still crawling.
BUT WAIT! The phone rang.
We were told our flight was not in Hongqiao Airport but in Shanghai Pudong International Airport which was miles apart.
The taxi made a U-turn. Rushed to the other airport in the opposite direction.
We got to Pudong Airport in good time, looked at the flight schedules on the plasma screens.
Looked and stared we did with our four pair of eyes.
WHERE IS OUR FLIGHT NUMBER? It is not on the screen!
To be continued...
TIP: When gettng an actor to pose for the camera, let them do it themselves. They are natural. Just keep the camera rolling.