Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Archive for May, 2009

An Open Book

It took them two years to build then it lay deserted for another two, but it seems the new Xinhua Bookstore on Liuzhou Square is finally going to open tomorrow, June 1st. Xinhua Bookstore is one branch of the huge state owned chain. It was formed way back on April 24, 1937 by the communists […]

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The local and national papers are full of the story of some drunk in a Mercedes Benz who, yesterday, drove through a bunch of people on bikes, motor cycles and electric scooters leaving behind a trail of broken bodies – 10 injured, one seriously. The idiot didn't stop and went home where he collapsed […]

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Memories Are Made Of This

Someone asked me earlier today, “What is your favourite memory of China?” Wow! So many. I really couldn’t think at the time. This happens quite often. Something to do with beer, perhaps. Then, later, I thought about it more deeply. Or less shallowly. Before I came to China for the first time, I spent about […]

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Bright Sparks

The only place ailing car company, General Motors is able to make money is in China. Here in Liuzhou they are involved in a three way joint venture with SAIC and Wuling Ltd making these rustbuckets minivans. The vans are cheap but unreliable and cannot be sold in many other countries because they do not […]

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Life Journey

I've never considered Liuzhou to be Rock 'n Roll central. And, although I like a lot of Chinese music, there is a lot more I don't like. And the few “rock bands” I've seen in Liuzhou were very amateurish. So, it is with some surprise that I come across 旅行团 or Life Journey today, thanks […]

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Cheese Blues

I should have known better. In fact, I did know better. I was having lunch with a couple of Chinese friends today when the topic of conversation changed to food and colour. We got round to discussing how few foods are blue. In this context, blue cheese was mentioned – by me. I said it […]

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Wrong Number

Something strange has happened. I have a landline phone at home, but I only ever used it for the internet ADSL connection. Everyone uses my cell phone number. Just over a year ago, I arranged to pay for the internet annually and stopped paying the phone fee. Of course, China Telecom cut the phone service […]

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Swine Flu Stars

The swine flu epidemic is proving to be rather good for the local economy. A key ingredient of the antiviral Tamiflu is shikimic acid which cannot easily be synthesised. Instead, the shikimic acid is extracted from star anise. 85% of the world’s star anise is grown here in Guangxi. Recently, the wholesale price of star […]

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