Saturday, June 24, 2006

Travels to Hangzhou, 130 Year Record High Temperature, and the Plum Rains

Stacey and I took the train and traveled to Hangzhou for a few days. Day one was for work, but we couldn’t get out on a train the night before so we headed back home on Saturday. I traveled to meet with several game developers at the software parks here in Hangzhou. This meant we had time to check out the West Lake area and a few of the many temples as well as walk the local streets. Being away from Shanghai gave us a chance to see what life is like in other less hectic parts of China. Co-workers refer to this as a ‘little town’, so I’m picturing something like Seaside or Newburgh, 16,000 or so people. Actually, small town in China is around 6 million people. Out near the like there are lots of people but not many cars so its actually quite peaceful, including many pedestrian walkways.

Right now we are at the train station. we got here a bit early because we weren’t sure of traffic. It’s a madhouse. People bustling about, train schedules on LCD displays flashing in multiple colors, vendors of all sorts. Noise reflecting off of all the marble surfaces with nothing to dampen the sounds. There is air conditioning, but only enough to bring the 37 degree Celsius temperature down by a few degrees.

The two temples we saw today were very different. One, Leifing Pagoda was a renovated temple built on top of the ancient temple ruins. at the bottom one could see actual ruins of the 2,000 year old temple. We also visited Baouchu Pagoda. To get there, we walked to, up some MAJOR hills in some major heat. It was much smaller in diameter but taller and made of original materials. it was blocked from traffic so we couldn’t climb up inside of it.

Last Tuesday in Shanghai was a record 37 degrees. it was a 130 year high. this season is called the Plum Rains season for two reasons: plums…and rain! For some reason, we haven’t seen much rain, but we have seen a lot of plums.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I finally caught up on your blog and now your home. Awesome pictures.