blurred night view, busy sidewalk near the Bell Tower, Xian, November 2012
news stand and passersby, Xian 2012-11-16
Bell Tower, Xian I’ve been sick for about 3 weeks, ever since i got back from Xian. The air quality in Xian seemed to be particularly nasty, resulting in breathing problems and an allergy attack. After my return to Chengdu and a week around students with colds and winter coughs, my allergies turned into a chest cold. I’m starting to recover now, but I’ve pretty much spent my free time in bed, when not working. crowned head, Muslim quarter, Xian In Xian, I missed the attraction that the whole world flocks there to see, namely, the Terracotta Warriors. A colleague told me that it was, indeed, a stupefying sight, thousands upon thousands of silent sentinels, unearthed after a couple of millenia, guarding the tomb of of the Qin emperor who unified China. Next time, for sure. Muslim restaurant I stayed at the Hantang Inn Hostel my first night – a comfortable and friendly place in an alley near the city center. After walking through the Muslim Quarter and then visiting the Wild Goose Pagoda, I was exhausted. On the way back to the hostel I stopped at a small noodle restaurant and ate the best chicken soup with dumplings of my life. It was a bowl of soup to celebrate and to rhapsodize over, but sadly I never made it back for a second bowl. Another Muslim restaurant Getting to the Wild Goose Pagoda was an effort, involving a subway ride
I just returned from three days in Xian, the ancient capital of China and the eastern terminus of the Silk Road. It was a quick visit, just enough time to sample some of the local food and see a couple of monuments. I’ll post more photos in the days to come.
Jiefangbei shopping area at night, Chongqing I badly needed a weekend away. As I’m facing my final 10 weeks living and working in Chengdu, Sichuan, I’ve been under constant stress. When I was scheduled to give IELTS exams in Chongqing, I made a 3-day weekend of it, and actually relaxed for a couple of days. The weather was turning cooler, the summer was finally gone, and autumn was in the air. gateway, 下洪学巷 Xiahongxue Lane, Yuzhong District, Chongqing I spent Friday night at my favorite Chongqing guest house, the Sunrise Mingqing Hostel, where I had a small sitting room and bedroom, furnished with antique furniture. It was quiet and relaxing. The hostel is right next to the Huguang Guild Hall, an exquisite example of traditional architecture, which I visited the next morning. The photo above shows the gateway and steps that lead to the old hillside neighborhood where the hostel is located. newspaper I spent Saturday morning exploring some of the remaining ancient lanes and stone stairways that honeycomb the steep hillsides bordering the Changjiang (Yangtze) River. I took quite a few photos, which you can see in my Flickr set here. merchant, Shibati ancient neighborhood, Chongqing On Satuday night, after an afternoon of giving speaking exams, I found a basement food court that offered nothing but noodles and dumplings. After a delicious meal of handmade spicy noodles with beef, I walked to the historic Shibati area, an ancient stairway neighborhood that