It's over 30 degrees C (high 80s F) in Beijing now. As a friend said, Spring barely happened--the trees and flowers are very confused--and we just rushed straight into Summer! Last weekend, before this sudden hotspell, some friends managed to drive to the countryside just over the border into Hebei province, to get away from the city for one day, and enjoy some fresh air, fresh food and some gentle hiking.
The group had instructions to go to Chenjiapu, a small village of old farmhouses with some families settled there since the Wall was built, many with surname CHEN. From there, it's a short walk to the base of the mountains on top of which are several beautiful untouched sections of the Wall - undamaged (by Man, but not by Nature) and unrestored. One can hire a guide for 100 RMB to take you on a range of walks, such as High and Round Towers (only 3 such round ones on the whole Wall, the guide said), demanding but rewards with one of the best views over the Chenjiapu valley and beyond, or Hunchback Curve, also demanding but with some of the most picturesque Wall curves and fairy-tale like staircases in beijing, or Easy Over, a short walk of 3 or 4 hours.
I wonder how she spent her honeymoon? staying up to watch the sunset (or sunrise) over the Wall, or the stars at night? How romantic!
Friday, May 21, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Some were at the Auto China 2010, which featured 990 cars from all over the world. The show attracted 800,000 visitors over 10 days, making it the world's best-attended auto show. I'm glad I went last year (see my Apr 2009 blog "Moo-ve over Ox, this is the Year of the Car"), and bought my car then, because in just one year, prices have gone up and delivery times increased to several months. My car is cheap compared to the 40 luxury cars sold for 150 million yuan, that's an average of just over half a million USD each! The most expensive one was a Bugatti Veyron 16.4 sold for 5.6 MUSD.
Some of my Beijing clients were on their way to the Shanghai Expo. You hear about this every day on the TV, a bit like before the Beijing Olympics 2 years ago. Twice as much money has been spent on this Expo than on the Olympics. 70 million are expected over the 6 months to end of October, in a city of 22 million people. It will be a chance to show off China's economic development to the world, but since 95% of the visitors will be from within China, it is more a chance to show the world to the Chinese.
I plan go in July with some clients. For those of you who can't come, there's always the virtual site on http://www.expo.cn/.