Monthly Archives: May 2011

Things they don’t really have here

– wifi (mostly) – wikipedia (mostly blocked but works in Beijing) – facebook (blocked) – twitter (blocked) – youtube (blocked) – carpet shampooers (this is more of a problem than you would imagine.) – toilet paper in public bathrooms – … Continue reading

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Silk factory, Beijing

Today’s tour included two obligatory shopping stops.  The last is at a factory that manufactures silk quilts.  I was afraid that there would be a long line of teenage girls unravelling the cocoons, so I heaved a huge sigh of … Continue reading

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The Forbidden City, Beijing

More big, dumb things

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Great Wall, Badaling

My favorite part of the great wall was watching people climb down the steep slope.  Sort of like everyone was doing the Shimmy Shimmy Coco Bop and/or the Smooth Criminal. It’s too hazy for these photos to look like much.

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Captive market

I’m on a tour bus en route to the great wall, fighting a virus and feeling listless.  The bus just made an unexpected stop at a ‘jade factory’ which is a giant featureless building designed to extract cash from tour … Continue reading

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Beijing museum of urban planning: when gods walked upon the earth

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Xian: scowly photos

No one was grumpy, it was just sunny today. From top to bottom: – Me on top of Xian’s city wall with a view of the outer city – Dad in front of an enormous bell (this is /the/ bell, … Continue reading

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The jokes about Chinese loudspeaker technology play out in many of these beautiful settings.  This mountain had a themesong which played in the gondola and also from discreet speakers at several points along the path.  So, while viewing the photos … Continue reading

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Xian dumplings

This restaurant is famous for having ‘more than 100’ kinds of dumplings.  Of course, no one can eat 100 dumplings, so they have three fixed price options.  I asked what the difference was between the menus, and the server responded … Continue reading

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Shaolin kung fu

When the Shaolin monks asked for volunteers during their demonstration, I did not raise my hand!  It turns out they just wanted some people to embarass, though, not someone to beat with rakes. The demonstration consisted of many impressive feats … Continue reading

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