Thank you all, really.
Your suggestions and information is very much appreciated and I am writing everything down.
I've been to China a couple times and spent two days in Shanghai, on a couple journalistic travels, but they were sniffs of an appetiser, just enough to make you want to jump on this cultural feast until you burst out.

I have a good contact in Shanghai and she's been very helpful so far and I am hungry for adventure and exploration, as this is what my focus is in life.

I am tad concerned that I only have a bit over a dozen rolls of HP5+ and i am considering the possibility of either stocking up before I leave, or continuing with Lucky, with which I had good luck on my last trip, even though its soiled reputation (I even opened up a thread here). Digital? Still not interested.

I have considered writing a sort of a journal, maybe even a blog...
If you have any suggestions for explorative visual projects, don't be shy!
My plans include not only language and a sense of history, but painting, calligraphy, martial arts, dance, cooking and all other riches I can discover. Of course, people!

On another note, do you think there would be any sort of opportunity of finding work a photographer?