We went by bus, an old bus and in the Chengdu Vacations rain its roof leaked so much that I was forced to put up my umbrella to keep Chengdu Vacations dry. The local version of a mackintosh is made of palm-tree fibre, sewn with string into the form of a long-tailed jacket. As a present for her mother Waree was carrying an armadillo. She kept it on a string, tied around its back and armpits, and when she lifted it, the armadillo curled up in a ball; brown and scaly, with its long snout tucked under-itsÂ».tail. When she put the bundle on the floor it uncurled to half a yard in length and scrabbled with long-clawed toes to get away.
The embodied experience of driving and being in a car provides a site in which to understand the meanings of place in the contemporary city. It creates attachments to place (Bull 2004) as well as allowing detachment from the here and now through states of distracted, imaginative, wanderings (Morse 1998). This flexibility, and how it can be reconfigured constantly during a driving experience, highlights the duality of placelessness and place as experiences that define the contemporary urban environment.
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