Archives For Streetscape

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happy new year

Chinese New Year of the Sheep

john  —  February 20, 2015
Guo Mao Three’s Chi­nese New Year of the Sheep display.

Guo Mao Three’s Chi­nese New Year of the Sheep display.

羊年大吉 – Yáng nián dàjí The year of the Horse is now over. 2015 is a year of the “Goat” according to the Chinese 12-year animal zodiac.

羊年大吉 – Yáng nián dàjí
The year of the Horse is now over. 2015 is a year of the “Goat” according to the Chinese 12-year animal zodiac.

Chi­nese New Year starts in a few weeks and the horse will make way for the Year of the Sheep. Down the road from our apart­ment is Guo Mao Three, which always has some of the best hol­i­day dec­o­ra­tions. For the New Year they have this illu­mi­nated dis­play, por­tray­ing sheep in a tra­di­tional Chi­nese style. It looks pretty good in the day­time but even more impres­sive at night.

(Blog posted by Ray on February 3, 2015. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

China’s Street Postman Pats

john  —  October 12, 2013 — 11 Comments

Sep13_DeliveryEvery morn­ing on the way to work I pass groups of deliv­ery men lay­ing out their parcels on the pave­ment. China has the largest online e-tailing indus­try in the world, so to get the goods to the cus­tomers they use one of the thou­sands of pri­vate deliv­ery companies. Originally if you wanted to send a par­cel you had to use the government’s China Post. But the boom in online shop­ping has cre­ated a huge oppor­tu­nity for smaller, cheaper and quicker deliv­ery ser­vices to prosper. These Post­man Pats, are not allowed inside the cam­pus so they lay the goods on the pave­ment. And then tele­phone the recip­i­ent to come out and col­lect their parcels. So every­day in my depart­ment I see some­one com­ing in with a pack­age or box that they bought online.

(Blog posted by Ray on September 13, 2013. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

Apr26_BillboardWhat orig­i­nally drew my atten­tion to this bill­board was the paint­ing of the old Chi­nese horse-drawn car­riage and the tri­cy­cle parked in front of it. I thought the idea of show­ing the ancient trans­port with the more mod­ern pedal pow­ered made an inter­est­ing jux­ta­po­si­tion. When I first came to China in the late 1980s the cycle still dom­i­nated the roads and more than 90% of the traf­fic was bicy­cles. Nowa­days the traf­fic is 90% cars with fewer and few pedal cycles. I’d love to find my old pho­tos from that period, but I think they are in stor­age some­where in the UK prob­a­bly at my par­ents house. So next time I go back to the UK I will try to dig them out. As Can­thy is often ask­ing to see old pho­tos of me from my first trip to Bei­jing in 1988.

(Blog posted by Ray on April 26, 2013. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

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Fair outlook at Ditan Park

john  —  February 23, 2013

di-tan-park

Ditan Park welcomes visitors to its annual Spring Festival fair to appreciate the traditional customs of the Chinese Carnival. Every year, residents will be selected to perform the role of the emperor during the ritual in the morning, which was conducted annually at the beginning of the year to bless the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) harvest.

Source: City of Beijing

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It’s already the 1st Feb­ru­ary and I’m not sure where Jan­u­ary went. I’ve had an irreg­u­lar start to post­ing on this pho­to­blog in 2013 and I’ve got behind again by a cou­ple of weeks. Any­way, a new month and another new start to try to post more fre­quently and stay on tops of things.

This month it’s Chi­nese New Year, so fes­tive dec­o­ra­tions are going up every­where. Red Chi­nese paper cut­tings are very pop­u­lar and tra­di­tional at this time of year. These ones appeared on the win­dows of the can­teen at work and say Happy New Year 新年快乐  (Xīn nián kuài lè).

I know it only feels like we just had Christ­mas and West­ern New Year, but the Chi­nese New Year is a much big­ger event in China and it means I get to go home and see my fam­ily. I can’t wait!

Feb7_New_Year_Lanterns

(Blog posted by Ray on February 1, 2013. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

Heavily polluted air in Beijing

john  —  January 13, 2013

People visit the Tian'anmen Square in Beijing, capital of China, Jan 11, 2013. The PM 2.5 (particles less than 2.5 microns) data in Beijing hit 240 to 446 on Friday, which means the 6 rating heavily polluted air quality. [Photo/Xinhua]

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Related story:

Beijing air pollution soars to hazard level (BBC)

A winter swimmer jumps into the icy water of the frozen Shichahai lake in Beijing, capital of China, December 22, 2012. Temperatures in Beijing could plunge to the lowest in almost three decades over the weekend, weather forecasters said Saturday. Photo: Xinhua

People enjoy themselves on the frozen Shichahai lake in Beijing, capital of China,December 22, 2012. Temperatures in Beijing could plunge to the lowest in almost three decades over the weekend, weather forecasters said Saturday.

Temperatures in the Chinese capital Beijing could plunge to the lowest in almost three decades over the weekend, weather forecasters said Saturday.

Temperatures are expected to drop to minus 15 degrees Celsius in urban areas over the weekend.

Beijingers started to feel the freezing weather after a cold spell came in from Siberia on Friday night, Wang Hua, chief forecaster of Beijing Meteorological Observatory said.

Chen Dagang, a senior meteorological forecaster at the observatory, said the capital city’s lowest temperature in recent decades was minus 15.2 degrees, recorded in 1985.

Wang said in Beijing’s mountainous northern suburb, Sunday’s temperatures could drop to minus 20 degrees Celsius. However, he said they would rise again on Monday.

On Saturday, fewer people were on Beijing’s streets. Not many people were seen at Tiananmen Square, a tourist hot spot.

“Your hands go numb in just a few minutes. Cameras also work very slowly due to the cold,” said a woman surnamed Zhou, who works on the square.

Most parts of the country, except the central and southwestern regions, will see temperatures fall by six to eight degrees Celsius in the next three days. Some parts of north and northeast China will witness a drop of 10 to 14 degrees Celsius, according to the observatory.

The National Meteorological Center on Saturday kept its blue alert for the cold weather that is sweeping many northern regions in China.

(Blog posted on December 23, 2012. You can see the original article by following this link to Global Times)

Canthy and I had to take a trip to the outskirts of Beijing, which meant a fairly long drive. The only problem was coming back it started to rain and rain and rain. The roads became even more treacherous and I think it was probably one of the worst rainstorms I have ever seen. We couldn’t really stop as we had to get home and the rain didn’t look like it would end. At times the water was almost wheel high on the roads, but with four-wheel drive it didn’t feel so bad. Canthy was scared the whole drive back and told me she has never been so frightened to be in a car. I thought of it as an adventure but I was extra careful so it took over two hours to get home. It wasn’t till later that we saw the news and images on TV. It had been the worse rainstorm in Beijing in 60 years, which had left 10 people dead and thousand flooded out of their homes. Luckily we drive an SUV and live on the 37th floor so the water didn’t affect us too much at all.

(Blog posted by Ray on July 21, 2012. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

Around our apartment in CBD, there are a number of new developments and office complex being built. Sometime last year I noticed a number of public artworks, mainly sculptures being erected. Probably the weirdest are these Easter Island heads at the back of our apartment. They look totally out of place, as the originals are in the middle of the Pacific Ocean on Easter Island. Sadly, it’s another example of China copying something rather than creating its own art. I would rather of seen something which reflected the area and had a more Chinese character. There are so many new young modern artists in Beijing it’s a shame they had to produce another copycat piece of art.

(Blog posted by Ray on May 15, 2012. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)

 

Over the past few weeks I’ve noticed more of these “Beijing Spirit” posters, adverts and billboards being put up around the city. I guess it must be a local government initial to promote Beijing and foster a community spirit. The last time I remember this happening was during the Olympic games in 2008. This latest campaign has all the hallmarks of the old fashion propaganda slogans from the 1950s. It’s a pity it doesn’t create a more international feel and look more creative and attractive, as they appear to be sticking it up at every empty space they can find.

(Blog posted by Ray on April 17, 2012. You can see the original article by following this link to rayallychina.com)