Looking back to 9 March, I find a bunch of pictures that never made their way onto the blog. Time to take care of that oversight.
With the weather turning nicer finally, I thought I’d take a walk. I had the ostensible purpose of finding some light bulbs for my bathroom – they’re an unusual kind I haven’t found in a store nearby – but I really just wanted to see a neighborhood I haven’t covered yet.
I rode the subway a couple stops north on Line 13 and got off to walk along the Third Ring Road. It’s a district of block after block of apartments.
As you can see, it wasn’t the clearest of days. But at least it wasn’t cold.
This is one of the typical incongruous sights you see here. I am not sure how toucans and ax-wielding winged Chinese figures go together, but there they are. I also wonder where they came up with the name Glidous.
After a while I came to a second canal, this one a little more appealing in appearance. I personally wouldn’t go so far as to swim in it, but this guy did.
This is a little park called Tuanjiehu (I looked it up, and tuanjie means unity; I already knew that hu is one word for lake). There was a sign explaining its history in Chinese and English, but it was so incoherent I couldn’t make much sense of it. Something about a kiln being torn down and turned into a lake. Must have been a pretty big kiln.
Some of the skaters were pretty good. There were also bumper cars and other small rides as well as pedal boat rentals for the lake.
The park is in the midst of a rapidly developing district of high-tech office towers.
And a few blocks south, you catch a glimpse of the highest-tech of them all.
That’s the new headquarters of China Central Television.
And for now, just one more shot of this unnatural wonder.
It would seem that the government here, in addition to developing technology that can miraculously filter the whole internet, can filter gravity as well, at least in this vicinity.
You’ve seen the highest-tech, and not too far to the west of there is the highest-rise.
China World Trade Center Tower 3, which I’ve mentioned before. It’s probably already the tallest building in Beijing.
By this time, I was pretty tired. I’d covered about ten kilometers, and just about when I was ready to fall over, I stumbled across Tim’s Texas Roadhouse. A burger and a caipirinha helped revive me. Oddly enough, the drink was made with lemons instead of limes – I probably should have stuck with Tim’s specialty, the margarita.
It was getting dark, so no more pictures. On my way from Tim’s to the subway station, I heard a screech and a thump, and looked over to see a man laying in the street and a little van stopping. There was a pile of collapsed cardboard boxes scattered around the man. He had tried to get across the street in the middle of the block against the light. He didn’t seem to be badly hurt; he was getting to his feet before long.
I’ll leave you with one last picture. It’s an advertisement on the back of a taxi seat.
If you’re wondering why I would take interest in such a thing, consider this. The fruit known in America as kiwi was previously known as yangtao, scientific name Actinidia chinensis. Notice the second word there – does it remind you of any country? It originally had an English name of Chinese gooseberry. Yes, it is native to China. (I’m not completely sure about that Chinese name, since mihoutao is the Mandarin name I learned. But Mandarin is a Northern Chinese language, while the kiwi is native to Southern China, so no doubt the people who grew it there called it something else, perhaps yangtao, as mentioned on the Zespri site.) In any case, as the story goes, the fruit was taken to New Zealand in the early Twentieth Century, where it became a commercial crop, and they named it kiwi in order to sell it in other countries. And now the New Zealanders are selling Chinese fruit back to the Chinese! In all fairness, you might notice that some of the kiwis in the picture are yellow instead of green inside. They’ve developed a new variety that supposedly tastes different. I haven’t had one of these yet.
Oh, my. Now I’m really rambling. Must be time for bed.
By the way, I never did buy any light bulbs.