…you can see forever!
Bright, sunny and…industrious!
Actually, a better title might be “Here today, gone tomorrow!” Which may or may not represent my own stint in China, though it turns out that I’ll be here for at least another eight months.
What I’m actually alluding to is the phenomenon of perceived, rapid and sudden change that is so common to the landscape of China. Something familiar may up and disappear in the space of a day or, in the case of Jinyin St. (金银街), several weeks. Since the sudden start of construction about two weeks ago, Jinyin St. has been completely ripped up and redecorated. The buildings across from the Nanjing University Xiyuan Hotel have had a literal face-lift and faux, European-esque awning is in the process of going up as I write. Then there’s the street itself. Apparently, City Planning has decided to change the area into a pedestrian street…a Little Europe/America/vaguely-Western-ish Street if you will. Good-bye, blacktop. Hello, tiny cubes of uneven granite.
The street will no doubt be gorgeous once work is complete. And while I am skeptical about the lifespan of the eye-catching brick wallpaper, I will appreciate the awning on rainy Nanjing days. I also concede that the entire project is very clever and gives the city a dressed-up, foreigner enclave with a preexisting population. A preexisting population that is more than willing to frequent a henceforth, not-dusty, not-dingy social space a stone’s throw from their dormitory.
September 15, 2009
April 28, 2011
Certainly, with the amount of work being done (which actually also includes much repaving of the area around the cluster of school buildings next to the HNC) plans must have been in the works for a lengthy period of time. We only perceive the decision to rebuild as sudden since we had absolutely no notice. The moral of the story: Don’t blink. You’ll miss a whole lot in China.
On my way back from picking up my fully restored electronic dictionary, I happened to pass by Shizi Qiao on Hunan Lu in all its New Year’s splendor.
Shizi Qiao all decked out for Chinese New Year!
There was a stand selling really beautiful paper-cuts by Jiansu artist Chen Yao (陈耀):
Chen Yao’s （陈耀） paper-cut stand
The paper-cutting master himself! (Well a picture of him at least…)
Specially designed for Chinese New Year 2010!
The images in that last paper-cut were chosen to represent different auspicious sayings…Next up we’ve got the lantern festival to celebrate the end of two weeks of New Year’s celebration. I can’t wait to check out Fuzi Miao on Sunday!
Gearing up for Yuanshao is no problem!
Living in China gives you a new perspective on pollution. Now, I’ve never been to Beijing, but Nanjing’s air quality apparently gets torpedoed in November because all the farmers in the province burn their fields. The last couple of nights have been awful since the farmers only burn at night. (Supposedly…) Take a look:
Taken last night (11-07-2009)
Taken tonight...see all that foggy stuff? That's pollution!
It’s scary really. The doctor from the SOS clinic in Nanjing explained to us that the two most dangerous things you can do in China is: 1) Cross the street and 2) Breath the air.
I am in Nanjing!
It’s been about 24 hours since I flew in to Nanjing Lukou International Airport yesterday afternoon. I’m tempted to say that the flight wasn’t really that grueling, but since this afternoon’s outing, I feel completely wiped out. The weather is pretty hot and humid, and the Chinese characters everywhere are making my head spin. (I’ve totally got to cram this week before class starts!)
That said, the city is rather pretty (the traffic is terrifying!) and the Hopkins-Nanjing Center and Nanjing University campuses are gorgeous! The school arranged a tour of both for us today and we got to see most of the important school features in a whirlwind. The old architecture on the Nanda campus was definitely a treat to see. I’ll most definitely go back to have a closer look at it all.
My room overlooks the courtyard of the HNC campus, so I get to wake up every morning to see the koi fish swim circles around the fish pond.
There’s still a lot to see…but it’ll have to wait until later this week. I think it’s time for a nap! (And say hi to Wukong and Bajie ^^)