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My flight from Heathrow landed into Guangzhou, China, at 17:55 local time, or 09:55 London time. I’d slept intermittently on the flight and watched an excellent film called Wilder People starring Sam Neill. It’s about the adventures of a boy and a man in the New Zealand bush and had me laughing out loud which I always think is a good sign, though not so good for my fellow passengers.
I had three hours until my connecting flight so grabbed a beer in what looked like a MacDonalds, but sold chicken soup, braised beef, and noodles. I’d attempted to log into the airport’s free wifi and had been temporarily successful as a stream of Whatsapp messages came through. Just as my wifi cut out, one of my university friends Andy sent a group message with just one word…f**k.
It was the night of the US elections and I could only assume that the worst had happened overnight, and that now the world’s most powerful nation had chosen a racist, sexist as their leader.
As I frantically tried to reconnect in the fake MacDonalds, a young American couple confirmed my worst fears.
“Oh my god, this is dangerous, I mean he is dangerous…the people that have voted for him are low-to-middle class earners and they don’t realise how much they are going to suffer because of this”. I felt for them, they were obviously on a round-the-world trip, and for the final stages would be continually dealing with pressing questions about the morality and ethics of the ‘average’ American.

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