Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Archive for May, 2008

sdaeh rieht edih dna nur yeht semoc niar eht fI

It's raining. But they are forging ahead with the underground shopping mall in the flood zone! In addition, we are being sent text messages advising us to close doors and windows; switch off and unplug our computers, phones, televisions etc. during thunderstorms; and not have showers. I don’t get the last part.    

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Farmers’ Games

Forget the Olympics. Here is the real deal. Guangxi Farmers' Games. The Liuzhou team won three gold medals and three silver. Wei Liyan won the women's 100m tire pushing gold, and Yu Yanping won the women's anti-flood and moving sandbags gold, while Wei An Yong won the men's gold for throwing seedlings. I'm not making […]

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Hole Falling History

I’m delighted to learn that falling down holes is a long established China tradition and not unique to Liuzhou (although perhaps Liuzhou takes it more seriously than other locations). I am sent a quote from Simon Winchester’s biography of Joseph Needham, the “Eccentric Scientist Who Unlocked the Mysteries of the Middle Kingdom”. “Walking swiftly away from (an acquaintance, Needham) fell into […]

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Guardian Predicts Past – Updated

Only days after predicting the future, the Guardian has taken to predicting the past. According to their story today, “Thousands of injured earthquake victims will be moved to neighbouring provinces…” and “…soon be moved to Guangzhou, Chongqing, Nanjing, Shanghai, Kunming and Xi'an.” In fact, this began last Tuesday. The Chinese press was full of stories and pictures of victims being moved […]

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Liuzhou Mourns

 Liuzhou people observe the nationwide 3 minute silence for the victims of the Wenchuan earthquake. 14:28, Monday 19th May, 2008  The banner at 2:23 reads “The dead sleep peacefully; the living stay strong.” The cretins have blocked YouTube in China, so here is an alternative version.

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The Sound of Silence

At 14:28 today, I was in exactly the same place I was at the same time last week. Standing in front of a roomful of about 70 university students. Last week they were laughing and joking, waiting for 14:30 when their lecture would begin. Today, they had come& earlier than usual. No one was laughing. […]

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Guardian Predicts Future

I’m astonished to learn that The Guardian is able to predict the news. I read a story at 12:14 China time telling me that “people fell silent at 2:28 p.m.” They are reporting something more than two hours before it happens. You can see the story here and the local time and date in the […]

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Liuzhou Reacts to Earthquake

It has been a heartbreaking week. As I’m sure you know, the images pouring out of Sichuan have been terrible. It is astonishing, though, to hear of survivors still being pulled out of the destruction nearly a week later. What has impressed me most is the openness of the government and the reactions of the […]

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Flood Statistics

We are told that the floods are abating. The worst in 10, 20 or 50 years – depending on which rag you read. Here, in Liuzhou, I'd say 12 years. The worst was in 1996. Whatever, according to local news reports, this year's floods have left behind four dead in Liuzhou Prefecture and many more across Guangxi. […]

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How many roads must a man walk down?

Liuzhou Government have been polishing up their Chinglish and proudly announcing that Liuzhou has 20,862 square metres of pedestrian walkway. Indeed, for “new roads, a 3-meter-wide pedestrian walk is compulsory”. They illustrate this by providing this idyllic shot (left) of the peace and tranquillity one is liable to find in Liuzhou’s beautiful pedestrian havens. They […]

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