Published: January 2nd 2005January 2nd 2005
Everything is hunky-dory in China! The government is the best ever and getting better! Well, it is if you believe what you see on China's English language news channel, CCTV (ironic name - let's rename Fox News to "CIA"). Scary thing is, it ain't that different to ours, just less subtle.
...And the worst toilet in the world 2004 award goes to the internet cafe I used in Xian. China has the worst toilets I have ever seen/smelt, which is saying something after the Middle East. This place deserves the award for the kind of paralysing reek of shit that makes you feel dirty for days. The broadband connection was second to none, tho.
Xian is a top city, former capital of ancient China and all that, but actually really good 'cos I found a shop that sells deodorant. In fact, they have everything there that you can get at home, including all of the poncy designer stuff that I couldn't afford if I was that shallow. Like I said before, this ain't communism. The real reason for going to Xian is to see the Army of Terracotta Warriors. Hundreds of life size figures of warriors in battle formation
There he is!
His ears are 7 metres long!
from 2000 years ago were accidentally discovered by some bloke digging a well in the 70's. He was to be found signing autographs in the souvenir shop. Pretty impressive, but I think it will be more impressive when they dig up the whole lot - only about 10% of an estimated 60,000 have been excavated. Now that will be something.
I am in Chengdu right now. Good for giant pandas, where they have managed to breed them. I would put pandas in the same box as dolphins and whales as animals you must see before you die. Nearby is Leshan, funky city with a huge 71 metre Buddha carved into a cliff. And I learned how to make sweet and sour pork.
There are more photos below