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Beijing, Day 3

Beijing, China

The day started out with an intense ambition. We had three main attractions to visit: The Great Wall, The Summer Palace and Tian An Men Square, in that order.

The Great Wall featured, of course, lots of steps. Most at a severe incline. It's probably one of the most international tourist sites in the world. I heard at least 10 different languages spoken on the hike up. Where most people climb the great wall and some even skate it, for Robert it was just another obstacle to jump over in order to find plants. And find them he did. He came back with plastic bags of not t-shirts but of plants to show us on the bus. Mao said your not a hero until you climb the great wall... I wonder what he thought about teachers who jump it. There was a nice hook on the ride to the wall, yet again by our tour guide. We took a short detour to see a jade factory, which of course had a massive jade store attached. We all protested before going in, but yet again, most people ended up buying something (perhaps there's subliminal messaging in these places). The hook worked.

The next stop was the Summer Palace which is a good drive back from the wall. The palace is one of the largest parks in all of China and was the vacation spot for the later dynasties. The gardens and lake were a welcome haven for us, although we had to rush through it in order to fit all of the days activities. Where there is Yin there is Yang... to contrast the peace of the garden, just outside was an alley back to the bus, which we've nicknamed "swindler alley." Not only was the long alley loaded with poor merchants hounding us to buy their t-shirt knock-offs and cheap crafts, they were ready to scam the tourists. After some tour members put up a good job haggeling down the price of some goods, they found their change back to be counterfeit bills... So it is possible to get Shanghaied in Beijing.

After dinner we got to walk a few minutes around Tian An Men Square, which was lit up at night and preparing for the upcoming Mid-Autum Festival (moon cake festival).

After the square we drove to the massive Beijing train station to get aboard our sleeper train to Luoyang. Upon entering there was a huge crowd outside waiting to get in and watching someone get detained by the police. After a bout of abuse, about 5 red guards handcuffed the guy and took him away. Then we had to deal with the bottlenecking and the thousands of people laying around or rushing to get on their train. While we were all excited to hop into our soft sleeper cabin on the train, we quickly realized that after a day of hiking around without a shower, the tight quarters weren't as pleasant as we thought, especially after we took our shoes off...

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 16, 2005 from Beijing, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged China, Beijing, TheGreatWall, SummerPalace, TianAnMenSquare, Jade, Theft, MoonCakeFestival, Autumn, Festival, RedGuard, Luoyang and SleeperTrain

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Beijing, Day 2

Beijing, China

After a change in plans, we visited IMPLAD an institute on the outskirts of Beijing where there are research facilities on herbal medicine and extensive gardens and green houses. We spent most of our time outside in the damp, over-cast garden with Robert reviewing about 25 common medicinal plants growing there.

After lunch we somehow got caught up in some kind of tourist trap that makes and sells pearls. After several awkward demonstrations of pearl creams and oyster shucking, we had enough, although there were a few enstarred shopers... We then straveled to Bai Wang Mountain on the edge Beijing.

While in pursuit of the ellusive Chai Hu herb, we came across countless plants and massive flourescent spiders. The Chai Hu was found, but half of our tour got lost along the way. After a few hours of hiking the rain finally broke and it drizzled the whole way back down the mountain. The group was divided, but we all made it back to the bus alright. Robert came back covered in plant matter and grit but with bags of samples, including the Chai Hu...we've never seen him happier.

After spending a ridiculus amount of time in the Beijing rush-hour traffic, we decided to skip out on dinner in an attempt to make it to the Peking Opera performance. We just made it... oh, by the way, the performer in the picture below is a man.

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 15, 2005 from Beijing, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged China, Beijing, IMPLAD, TouristTrap, Pearls, BaiWangMountain, Traffic and PekingOpera

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Beijing, Day 1

Beijing, China

After a long overnite flight we arrived in Beijing just before morning rush hour. The weather has been reported as "the best in over a month," with nice sun and cool breezes. The pollution and smog are at a minimum and the group is happy to be here for the next few days. We'll be even happier to sneak in a nap here and there.

After a big breakfast we walked through most of the Forbidden City, which is about 2 blocks from our hotel. Despite the massive reconstruction efforts there, the tour went well and it wasn't over crowded. After a few hours there we returned to the hotel. Unfortunately the acupuncture and herb museum was closed for some last minute rennovations. On the way back Robert found a bunch of common medicinal herbs simply growing around the streets and informed us what they are and used for.

After a short break, we went to see a Chinese Acrobat troop perform and had a late dinner before calling it a day. We're all tired but content and happy to be touring together.

Later, some brave travelers ventured down the street from the hotel to the night market, where u can pick up tasty treats like starfish, centipedes, scorpions on a stick...

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 14, 2005 from Beijing, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged China, Beijing, ForbiddenCity, MedicineMuseum and Acrobats

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Hangzhou/ Shanghai, Day 14

Hangzhou, China

It was a tight day, there was a lot to squeeze in.
We started by hiking up Phoenix Mtn. and see herbs there. This was the last hike, so naturally we had to get separated as a group in order to keep with the tradition. It was a nice day out and the trail was lined with new slate tiles all the way. Robert grabbed a couple of samples to show us on the trail and later on the bus.

During lunch we all decided that while Hangzhou is a niced city, we were ready to move on to Shanghai earlier and wanted to all have a formal, final dinner together.
So we revised the schedule a bit.

Next we visited the West lake tea farm. Along the drive you could see all the tea growing on the hill side. Here we met some of the local farmers who pick the green tea leaves and pan-dry it for 8 hours each day by hand. It's an arduous task and explained why the tea is expensive to produce. Then we met "Dr. Tea" who then explained all the benefits of green tea as well as the various grades there of. He was a total salesman with animated demonstrations. The teas though, tasted nice. Of course, we had to buy some, since it is hard to find good quality tea in the US.

We then had to hurry to catch our boat ride on west lake. The day started off beautifully and continued that way while we were out on the water, the weather was perfect. The ride offered nice views of the surrounded hills which were dotted with pagodas and temples. In the distance you could see the modern city, a drastic contemporary contrast to the ancient buildings. It was a perfect snapshot of modern China.

After the lake, we had about an hour to squeeze in any last minute shopping at the promenade in town. there were lots of paintings, textiles, handcrafts and snacks to be had. So much to buy, so little time.

Then it was our last 3 hour bus ride to our final destination: Shanghai.
The city was all lit up. Shanghai is a city with the height of NYC, the width of LA and the electric light overload of LV. Our hotel was located right on the end of the "Bund," an area along the river where on one bank there are all old European colonial buildings and the other all skyscrapers made during the last 10 years. It was a great drive and a perfect introduction to the chaotic city.

We quickly checked into our hotel, which was all Art Deco and made in the 30's. Then it was nice final dinner together. We were all able to fit at one large table this time. After many toasts and thanks to one another we called it a night. it was great to wrap up the trip together this way. So much had happened in the past weeks, you could barely remember all the events. At this point, the traveling had taken a toll and most of us were exhausted. We had to prepare for the next day, check out and leave Shanghai at noon. A few brave souls walked around the Bund and checked out Shanghai's night life.

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 28, 2005 from Hangzhou, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged Food, China, Herbs, Medicine, Nanjing, TeaHouse, Mountain, Hangzhou, TeaFarm, Phoenix, PhoenixMountain, Herbal, Tea, Boat, BoatRide, Lake, ArtDeco and Bund

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Nanjing/ Hangzhou, Day 13

Nanjing, China

We checked out in the morning and drove over to Nanjing Pharmaceutical University where we met Dr. Chen and the director there. They took us on a brief tour of the school and a small herb museum while we waited for the herb garden to be unlocked. No pictures allowed.

While waiting a few of us wondered around campus. We saw a few thousand students dressed in military outfits yelling chants and marching around the grounds with rifles. It was strange to see such a presence at a medical school, we wondered if it had anything to do with the upcoming holiday: National Day. Sean told us that it was just a way of breaking in the new freshmen, in an attempt to convince them that school is serious and not a place to party. He thought it was a funny sight too... because the students have little to do with the military at all. Still, it was a frightening to see.

Meanwhile DJ and Patricia were on a mission to buy one of the student jumpsuits that say "Nanjing Pharmaceutical University" on it. The campus store wouldn't sell it to them and thought that something was up, because no foreigners would want such a thing. In the end they were able to trade some stuff from the US with some students there and got the jackets. We were finally able to get into the garden and Robert took us on a tour reviewing the herbs that were growing there.

We only spent a few hours there and most of it was spent wondering around the campus, which is a very different experience then that of any school in the US. Students are 4-8 in single room. Everything is cold concrete communist-style. For fun, there's ping-pong and badminton (only after marching). we then said goodbye to Dr. Chen and our local guide Sean and were off for lunch.

After that we were off for another 3-4 hour bus ride to Hangzhou. This time it was a scenic, sunny drive. We saw lots of farms and then suburban developments; building was everywhere. Along the way was an awesome new rest-stop. We were able to stock up in water and some comforts of home (well, they had Lay's chips.. even if they were cucumber flavor or Italian meat-sauce flavored). We got a kick outta that place. Then it was back on the bus.

We arrived in Hangzhou in the evening. Before checking in at the hotel, we met our local guide Jerry and went to visit a silk factory. It was pretty cool to see how all these tiny filaments are spun into thread and then spooled into what looks like cob webs. It's quite strong when massed together. The guide showed us the way to determine whether silk is pure or not: you burn it.... Umm, OK. If it's white smoke, it's real, black it's not. Good luck trying that one at Macy's. Naturally, there was a silk store next to the factory which had anything silk you could want. Some people bought some bedding, but most of us just wanted to checkin and pass out.

permalink written by  Benjamin Satterfield on September 27, 2005 from Nanjing, China
from the travel blog: China Tour Fall 2005
tagged Food, China, Herbs, Medicine, Nanjing, TeaHouse, TCM, Doctor, Hangzhou, TeaFarm, NationalDay, University, NanjingPharmaceuticalUniversity, Silk, SilkFactory and Clothes

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Travel in China

Chengdu, China

Dear all, do you like travelling in China. We travel agency in Chengdu can supply you various kinds of tour in China. Any problem,feel free to contact me.

permalink written by  Jessie-Chang on April 13, 2007 from Chengdu, China
from the travel blog: Happy tour in China
tagged China and Travel

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Planning madness

Manchester, United Kingdom

We got the money, got the tickets and its all plans on deck! Flying to Hong Kong on the 3rd August, so lets all go and eat and drink before that to say bye! So far we have learnt:
- That the Chinese and Vietnamese and Hong Konganese want to charge you to get into any space that may be of vague interest to anyone including caves, parks, waterfalls and other such wonders of mother nature.
- We have also learnt that bedbugs are most visable at dawn, and that adult ones are 1/4 inch long.
- HSBC make money for Hong Kong and we feel rich because we have thousands of dollars!
- American money smells of playdough (though there is some debate as to whether this smell is actually crayon).
- The Chinese consulate has a big dip in the pavement near it which in the rain is dangerous as your foot can be completely submerged and soaked, this combined with the consulate being closed is heartbreaking.
- We could stay in peoples houses for free, but I (Laura) is scared (because she is scared of people).

Finally we have discovered that China is so mega massive that there is no way we could possibly see all of it in years let alone months, though we are going to the land that brought you Spring rolls and sweet and sour chicken (as far as most takeaways are concerned).

permalink written by  Mal and Laura on August 3, 2007 from Manchester, United Kingdom
from the travel blog: A bit of China and Vietnam
tagged China, HongKong, Planning, Manchester, Vietnam and Facts

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China Trip

Shanghai, China

source: 翻译公司 http://www.oktrans.cn
Australia has launched the country’s biggest ever security operation ahead of the arrival of 21 world leaders, among them Philippine President Gloria Arroyo, for the Asia-Pacific Economic Summit this weekend, ABS-CBN Australia News Bureau reported Monday.

Bureau chief Gigi Grande, however, also said in her report that Sydney, the site of the gathering, remained on medium alert because no specific intelligence information about an attack had been received.

Special police powers are now in effect, giving policemen the right to search and detain anyone in the APEC-declared security zone whom they find suspicious.

Authorities are most concerned about two things: a terrorist attack and violent street protests.

A five-kilometer fence has been built to seal off Sydney's Opera House where most meetings are scheduled to take place.

Hospitals are also on standby.

About 200 prisoners serving minor offenses are being sent home for the weekend to make room for potentially violent protesters.

US President George W. Bush is set to arrive on Tuesday while the rest of the world leaders, including Mrs. Arroyo, are scheduled on Friday.

Climate change and the fight against terrorism are expected to top the agenda.

In Manila, a statement from the presidential palace in Malacañang said Mrs. Arroyo is all set to travel Down Under for the six-day meet.

The President will be accompanied by Cabinet and other agency officials. Meetings have been set with their counterparts from Australia and New Zealand with regard to free trade deals.

Business leaders and officials of the country's biggest companies will also be with the President during the gathering.

In a related report, Chinese President Hu Jintao arrived in Australia Monday for a seven-day state visit focussed on the Asian giant's need for mineral resources to power its booming economy.

Hu was accompanied by Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and Commerce Minister Bo Xilai. Their planed arrived in the Western Australian city of Perth for a one-day visit on his way to attend the APEC meet in Sydney.

Hu's arrived ahead of a visit focused on the mineral and mining industry.

Hu will be the guest of honor at a dinner later Monday hosted by Western Australia Premier Alan Carpenter.

On Tuesday, he will visit the Australian Resources Research Centre near Perth, where he will hear a presentation by mining giant BHP Billiton.

China's importation of mineral resources, including uranium, to fuel its economic and industrial growth is blessing Australian miners with record profits.

China is Australia's second largest trading partner, while Australia is China's ninth. In 2006, trade between the two countries amounted to US$32.9 billion, up 20 percent from the previous year.

Hu will visit Canberra on Tuesday before heading on to Sydney where he is scheduled for a meeting with Australian Prime Minister John Howard later in the week. The two sides are set to sign a series of trade, energy, and mineral resource deals, the China Daily newspaper reported. 上海翻译公司 http://www.oktrans.net

permalink written by  tonyyang123 on September 3, 2007 from Shanghai, China
from the travel blog: China Trip
tagged China

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Unforgettable China trip includes perfect record for Vikings

Shanghaimiao Muchang, China

Fourteen days, eight airline flights and 17,840 miles later we're finally back home in the States, carrying with us a 4-0 basketball record to go along with a slough of unforgettable memories.

The anticipation for us kept growing and growing, especially as we came closer to the end of our final 11-hour flight back home, and I think everyone was happy and relieved to be back with family and friends.
上海同声传译 http://www.oktrans.net/industry/simultaneous.htm
Our trip -- in which we made two stops in Tokyo, stops in Hong Kong, Dongguan, Guangzhou, Wuhan, two in Beijing, and another in Hohhot, the capital city of Inner Mongolia -- has definitely helped bring our team together. We were able to achieve the goals we set for ourselves at the beginning of our trip.

We also have been able to gain a great perspective on what our peers will experience in the fall foreign term to China. Eighty-one Augustana students will spend roughly 10 weeks in and around China, going through many of the same things we went through on our trip -- language barriers, different food and a still-developing Asian society are just a few of the things they will have to adapt to. Our hats go off to them, as none of us could imagine how hard it would be to be that far from home for that long.
上海同传设备出租 http://www.oktrans.net/tongchuan
This trip was an unbelievable chance for all of us to learn about a culture different from our own and I think we took full advantage. We saw first-hand the widening gap between the modernizing parts of China and rural China; witnessed the strong work ethic and motivation of their culture; saw numerous glimpses into Chinese culture (from bargaining in the markets to peoples' polite nature); and even were able to sample some of the Chinese social life. It was just an amazing adventure that none of us will ever forget.

To end this diary, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank some of the more influential people who made our trip possible. First and foremost, we would like to thank all of our parents for allowing us to take this once-in-a-lifetime trip. Without you, we realize none of this could have been possible.
同传设备租赁 http://www.oktrans.cn/simultaneous
Next, thank you to our coaching staff for dreaming up this trip and allowing us to have a great balance of basketball and "down time" for these two weeks. To all of our family and friends that helped out leading up to the trip, and those of you who stayed in contact while we were gone, thanks to you as well.

Thanks next to Augustana College, most notably sports information director Dave Wrath, who generated the idea for this diary from square one, and Augustana president Steven Bahls, whose endorsement and recognition of this great opportunity were vital to us.

Also, I would like to thank The Dispatch and The Rock Island Argus, most notably sports editor Marc Nesseler and sports writer Tom Johnston, for providing the medium for the diary and offering encouragement along the way. Lastly, let me thank Dr. Norm Moline and his wife, Janet, for offering their expertise on the trip, and without whom this trip could not have happened.

I hope this diary was interesting for everyone, offered some insight into our experience, and was as much fun to read as it was to write. I also hope to see you this winter in Carver Center when my Augustana teammates and I will be playing a little bit closer to home.
source: 同声传译 http://www.oktrans.cn/price/simultaneous-interpretation.htm

permalink written by  tonyyang123 on September 3, 2007 from Shanghaimiao Muchang, China
from the travel blog: China Trip
tagged China

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Picutres of ShenZhen , China

Shenzhen, China

A tram in NS .
A tea Shop in NS .
Side walk in NS .
Side walk in NS #2 .
Side walk in NS .
Sitting down .
Diwang Building .
A modern Roof .
Side walk ...
Lights in Macdonald !
Getting into the bus ,no queing in China !

permalink written by  ironfist on February 14, 2008 from Shenzhen, China
from the travel blog: BEING STILL IN SHENZHEN FOR 3 YEARS .

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