Plum Blossoms

May 18th, 2008

Spring comes earlier in Jiangsu Province than many other regions in China. While the temperatures in the northern cities are still quite low, Jiangsu’s Wuxian City has already begun to glimpse the promise of spring. Warm temperatures combined with sunshine, the peach and plum blossoms start to bloom early too. As a result, it is customary for the local people to hold the annual plum blossom festival in the village of Linwudong, which lasts for three weeks. The festival usually takes place during the last week of February and ends approximately the second week of March. Visitors from far and wide are attracted to this famous festival each year.
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The Pearl of the Orient

May 17th, 2008

Are you running out of idea as where to go for your next R&R? You feel the world-famous Phuket resort in the south of Thailand has become overcrowded with too many retirees from Europe who have decided to make their home in this part of the world. With their comparatively stronger currencies, they hope to be able to live comfortably and inexpensively in the “land of smiles”. There are also a number of young “dropouts”, often referred to as “Aussteiger” in German, who have come here to live at the expense of the taxpayers in their respective countries. To obtain a residence permit, all they have to do is marry a local and live happily ever after on this “paradise island”. Naturally, to the chagrin of many inhabitants of the island .

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Nanjing, The Capital of Jiangsu Province

May 15th, 2008

Friday was hot, humid and overcast when Walter and I set out for Nanjing. It was to be our third trip to the capital of Jiangsu Province. The first and second were in the summer of 1997 and 1998 – just another indication of how long we’ve been living in China.

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The Graceful Art of “Mulan Quan”

May 15th, 2008

pauline2002_03aPauline Haldemann describes her experiences with this form of martial art.

Before moving to Suzhou in 1998, we lived in Shanghai for fifteen months. When Walter and I arrived from Switzerland on January 16, 1997, we moved into Regent Tower in Hongqiao. The condominium overlooks a small park next door.

 

 

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The Land of Chinggis Khaan

May 15th, 2008

Mongolian horse menI have always found the Mongol Empire fascinating. Exotic names such as Chinggis Khaan and Kublai Khaan conjured up vivid imagination of the mighty warriors, galloping across the grassland on horseback – their traditional garb billowed in the wind. The fierce Mongol army swept through Europe and the Middle East, killing enemies in their path, including the Caliph of Baghdad. The sheer thought of the Gobi Desert is enough reason for anyone to want to venture into the “mystic” land. Thus, with 15 other SEA members, I began a journey to Mongolia.

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The Race that Unites

May 12th, 2008

“I’m so jealous,” said an Australian expatriate in Suzhou in jest upon learning that I was going to the Melbourne Cup Luncheon in Shanghai. She herself could not make it because the removers were coming to pack her belongings to be sent back home. However, she intended to watch the race live on Star Sports. Coming from Melbourne, the lady said she would not miss the event for anything in the world.

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