Blogs from Guangdong, China, Asia - page 4


Asia » China » Guangdong » Shenzhen December 4th 2013

Why I live in a SPA The SPA business in Shenzhen next to Hongkong and in some other Chinese cities is a very special thing. Let me explain why I am here and not in a hotel. When I arrive, 3 people say “Ni hao” and take my luggage. I leave my luggage at the reception. I get a bracelet with some code on it. Then I am being led upstairs to the locker where the locker boy helps me undressing and gives me a towel and slippers. After that I am going downstairs to the wet area. I take a shower (everything is there: shampoo, conditioner, even tooth brushes and razors) and then I have the choice between hot pool, cold pool (REALLY cold) and 3 kinds of sauna. After that I am handed some ... read more

Asia » China » Guangdong » Shenzhen December 2nd 2013

OK, here is my travel report. From Munich I was flying to Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi is a terrible airport. Bad signage, too many people, expensive. The line to transit security check was about 250m long. Clerks all shouting, no matter if you are a real believer or as atheist as I am. 250 seems to be the magic number there. Because it was the distance from the gate to the toilet (at least when you don’t read Arabian) and 250/10 was the number of people waiting to get inside the toilet. So if you are changing planes there, calculate one extra hour… Etihad is an average airline. I don’t see why they should have won “best airline” the last 5 years. They are not better or worse than Lufthansa and in no way can they ... read more

Asia » China » Guangdong » Daliang November 25th 2013

The temperature has definitely changed now with Autumn been and gone and winter finally here. We can’t complain though when ‘winter’ means 18 degrees and sunny. It’s still quite nice though to get the pyjamas on at night and the duvet on the bed! And drinking a cup of tea just isn’t the same when you’re sweating in 35 degrees of heat. Apparently the drop in temperature means less mozzies, which is good news for me as hopefully now they’ll stop dining out on my legs every night. I look like I’ve got chicken pox all over my legs which isn’t the most attractive look. Our teaching journey continues on and this week we’ve been doing review tests to check the students’ progress. However, it’s all a bit pointless when our boss has discreetly told us ... read more
Day out
Chicken feet? don't mind if i do
Can't get enough of my sugar cane

Asia » China » Guangdong » Guangzhou November 21st 2013

November 11 has just passed. In the Anglo-European world its original import was to commemorate the ending of The Great War, hence its original name, Armistice Day. As the wars kept coming, somewhere around 50 before the start of the 21stCentury, the name was changed to”honor” to troops who fought. Never mind that we now show our respect for them with sales at the Dodge dealer or paint promotions from Aubuchon's. As with other things, when China imports customs it strives to localize them, adapt them to some tradition, real or imagined. Not unlike moving Jesus' birthday to December to localize it with the pagan Winter Solstice celebration. In this instance the Chinese have created a holiday known as Singles Day or Bare Branches Day (single men are known as bare branches.) This is something of ... read more
Evening wear in Guangzhou
Scallion pancakes
Building anew

Asia » China » Guangdong November 17th 2013

The 16th day on Lunar October is an important date for the Yao people. It was the day to memorized the birthday of their great leader Panwang. everywhere in the world the Yao made festival to celebrated this date. Especially in this part of China, the cross road between Hunan, Guangxi and Guangdong, where they claimed was the original birth place for the Yao, even pinpointed a place Qianjiadong to be exactly the place where the Yao ancestor lived. Although different area celebrated in a slightly different way, but the long-drum dance are the standard activity. Here in Liannan, Guangdong Province, the Yao like to gathered dance party called the Shuagetang, Shua mean play and Getang mean dancing party. in the old day each village would organized their Getang according to their convenient, then invited friends ... read more
The Panwang logo
the Youling valley


Asia » China » Guangdong » Shenzhen November 12th 2013

It's been a month since I posted a blog entry. It's been a mix of reasons that include actually being busy, pure laziness, and poor internet connections. I posted a blog earlier about China's Nowism: the idea that it's ok to tell someone last minute about changes in schedules. So two weeks ago, I learned 5 minutes before class that I didn't have class for two days because of midterms. I also learned that I got the next week off because the students had military training. So I had an 11 day vacation. Even though this vacation was longer than my National Holiday (9 days), I was unable to plan anything because I was told last minute. I still have failed to post my Hong Kong (HK) blog, but I have managed to go to HK ... read more

Asia » China » Guangdong » Guangzhou October 31st 2013

It has been a busy few weeks, as our presence here becomes known and people from past years make contact. Last week one of my students from five years ago got in touch, she is now a social worker at the Guangzhou Brain Hospital, the oldest psychiatric hospital in China. I was asked, with two days notice, to come and give a small talk. As I approached the front gate, I was met by my student who escorted me to her office. Entering the rehabilitation area I was greeted by a large red banner on which was written , in beautiful script, “A warm welcome to Stuart Friedman, USA social worker”. After a quick tour of the facilities, I was brought to the lecture hall where about 50 staff (nurses, doctors, psychologists, and social workers) were ... read more
Eating on the go
Does this look like making a living?
Ideas of beauty

Asia » China » Guangdong October 31st 2013

Wow, where does the time go? So the good news is our first pay packet is finally in our hands (we get paid on the 10th so its a long 6 week wait) and it is definitely a highlight for us, having spent our last few days eating the remainder of everything in our cupboards (including porridge made with water) so we cherish being able to buy some ‘luxury’ items including cheese (oh sweet cheese how I have missed thee), Weetabix (and not the fake stuff either), pesto (3 quid a jar but worth the spend) and chocolate! It’s funny the things that you miss when you are away as when we are back home, we’d think nothing about it and wouldn’t bother if we didn’t have those items in our fridge (apart from the chocolate ... read more
badminton with a 73 yr old
bike ride

Asia » China » Guangdong » Guangzhou October 13th 2013

We have been in Guangzhou for a little over a week at this point, although it seems in some ways that we have never left. The old haunts, the friends and colleagues from earlier visits, and the sights, sounds and smells of China quickly return me to the setting. Not exactly a madeleine but the tiger skin peppers on the plate evoke a remembrance of things past! Ellen and I are getting immersed in our routines, each in our way. For Ms. EDF it has been an ongoing round of meetings, reading groups and dinners (alas, no struggle sessions) as she fully engages at 180 MPH, full bore, flat out. For me, the pace has been more measured, but I now have in hand the outline of what is to be done on this visit, a ... read more
Selling some sort of hair piece
New mode of transport
AIDS/HIV campaign

Asia » China » Guangdong » Shenzhen October 1st 2013

As part of the National Day holiday, schools and workplaces have a one week holiday known as the ‘National Golden week’. It’s the longest holiday period the Chinese have apart from Chinese New Year and we really want to make the most of it by going away somewhere for a holiday. The only problem is we don’t have our passports at the moment as they are still at Shunde Government for processing, meaning we are a bit limited on where we can go. Even within China, you need your passport to get the bullet trains, so we have to find somewhere easily accessible by bus. Our original plan of Hong Kong has been blown out of the water so instead we find ourselves heading to Shenzen (which is frustratingly only about 5km away from the HK ... read more
splendid china
mini wall of china
Where's the tiger? oh there it is!

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