Presentation on theme: "10/13/02… Beijing… Summer Palace… Tiananmen Square We arrived in Beijing on Sunday, had about two hours to shower and rest, and then ventured out to the."— Presentation transcript:
10/13/02… Beijing… Summer Palace… Tiananmen Square We arrived in Beijing on Sunday, had about two hours to shower and rest, and then ventured out to the Summer Palace (Imperial Palace) and Tiananmen Square. The flowers and buildings at the palace were spectacular. I marveled at Ci Xi’s marble boat and enjoyed a boat ride on the lake. Marble boat built in 1888 with funds intended for the Chinese navy. Magnificent view of the Imperial Palace. Gardens at the Summer Palace. Willow trees around Kunming Lake at the Summer Palace.
10/14/02… Beijing IEEE… E-C Translation On Monday, we met at the Hotel Kunlun with the Beijing Chapter of IEEE. I was thrilled to hear professors from industry say they’ve begun to teach technical writing and have established the first Chinese technical writing style guide. After lunch, we drove across town to meet with E-C Translation and discussed technology, tools, and entry into the Chinese market. Western delegates with Chinese counterparts. Dr. George Hayhoe, delegation leader, with representatives of Beijing IEEE. Traditional Chinese fish presentation with a sweet and sour sauce.
10/15/02… Tsinghua University On Tuesday, we visited Tsinghua University, the “Harvard” of China. Both Chinese and Western delegates gave presentations on various topics in our field. We enjoyed an elegant lunch in the faculty lounge, where I became acquainted with a young graduate student who wants to study technical communication in the U.S. I made a plug for Texas Tech, of course! Chinese delegates discuss development of a technical terminology dictionary. Melanie Flanders explains the value of single sourcing. Western delegates with Chinese counterparts on the beautiful Tsinghua campus.
10/16/02… Forbidden City… Great Wall… Shopping! Wednesday was a cultural day, and we were ready for it. The Forbidden City is for me one of the most meaningful cultural sites in China. It is a relic of China’s dynastic rule and the majesty of emperors long forgotten. Since this was my second visit there, I ventured away from the group and discovered Starbucks and some great shopping! We had more shopping later at a Friendship Store, the Great Wall, and a cloisonné factory. Autumn was setting in at the Great Wall, and the trees changed colors. Beijing has built a new freeway to the Great Wall as they prepare for the 2008 Olympics. Starbucks hasn’t just made it to Beijing, they’re inside the Forbidden City, along with a fantastic bookstore on Chinese history.
10/17/02… Shanghai… Shanghai Museum… Pudong On Thursday, we flew to Shanghai, enjoyed a fabulous lunch at the top of a high-rise building, and had four leisurely hours at the Shanghai museum. There was a great exhibit of Chinese furniture, and of course, a fantastic museum shop. Afterwards, we checked in at the Pudong Shangri-La Hotel. I enjoyed a long hot bath, an in-room dinner, and.. I must admit… more shopping across the street at China’s first retail shopping mall. The Pudong section of Shanghai lies directly across the Huangpu River and was built - over rice paddies - in only twelve years. The view from my hotel window revealed the “Pearl of the Orient” TV tower on the left and the Pudong Grand Hyatt on the right.
10/18/02… Jiao Tong University… US Interactive… Acrobatic Show On Friday, we met with faculty and students at Jiao Tong University and toured a campus museum rich with 20th century Chinese history. In the afternoon, we met at Shanghai’s Face Club with the CEO of U.S. Active. A New York native, he has relocated to Shanghai and established a business to assist U.S. companies in entering the Chinese market. Friday night we went to an amazing acrobatic show at the Portman Ritz Carlton (no photos allowed). Portrait of Dr. Sun Yatsen, leader of the Guomindang (National People’s Party) prior to the Communist takeover. Books for the English language core curriculum used at Jiao Tong University. This photo collage at Jiao Tong University shows professors dating back to the mid-nineteenth century. There is a gap from 1965 to 1975 when all Chinese universities were closed because of Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution. Our meeting at Face Club centered around the need for technical communicators within Chinese industry, methods of communication used by U.S. Active, and opportunities for technical writers wishing to relocate to China.
10/19/02… Jade Buddha Temple… Old Town… Gardens… Shopping! On Saturday, we drove through the French section of Shanghai to the Jade Buddha Temple. We toured the lovely Yuyuan Garden in Old Town and heard a concert given by Chinese girls playing porcelain instruments. We visited a silk rug factory where several delegates purchased large silk rugs for their homes. I preferred the cashmere! Yueyang Garden was full of surprises at every turn. I had to remind myself to look up above the plants and fountains. Those brief quiet moments in the Yueyang Garden are some of my fondest memories of Shanghai. The rugs were stunning. Some folded small enough for a suitcase. Others were shipped and took more than two months to arrive. The pink pashmina was a terrific find!
10/20/02… Guilin We flew to Guilin on Sunday. After being in China for one week, we finally got to see rural China with its rice paddies and water buffalo. We checked into the Sheraton Hotel, and while others toured the Reed Flute Cave, I took a long nap and had a relaxing pedicure. You can’t visit China without going to Guilin. The mountains and Li River are like none other in the world. Artists flock here to study traditional Chinese watercolor. Young people study tourism. Seniors meet along the riverwalk in the morning for daily Tai Chi.
10/21/02… Guilin Inst. of Electronic Engineering… Guilin Primary School On Monday, we visited the beautiful campus of Guilin Institute of Electronic Engineering. Sadly, our discussion with faculty revealed less understanding of technical communication than we found in the large cities of Beijing and Shanghai. After lunch in the school cafeteria, we visited an English language class at Guilin Primary School and played games with the children during their recess. Then we relaxed at a fantastic art institute and gallery. The buildings on campus were very new. The highlight of our tour was a visit to the students’ computer lab. Imagine attending college at such a beautiful campus! Our leader, Dr. George Hayhoe, presented gifts to our counterparts at the conclusion of the meeting. The children we met at Guilin Primary School were about 7 or 8 years old and spoke excellent English. They had fun playing Simon Says and Duck, Duck, Goose.
10/22/02… Li River Cruise By Tuesday, our professional meetings were over and we had only one more day together in China. That day couldn’t have been more well spent, as we cruised the beautiful Li River to Yangshuo. We shopped in Yangshuo before driving back to Guilin for our farewell dinner. We laughed and enjoyed the camaraderie as we exchanged gifts and enjoyed our last evening together. We were constantly watching for water buffalo. They look like large cattle or oxen. Photos don’t do justice to the stunning beauty of the Li River and landscape. Our national guide, Patrick (on the left), was superb. He and Laura, our Guilin local guide, made our travels such a pleasure. They even taught us how to shop in China and negotiated prices for us.
10/23/02… All alone in China! I saw the delegation off at 6:15 Wednesday morning. Admittedly, I wept as they drove away. Seeing them go brought the realization that I was alone in this huge foreign country. This was my day to embark on a unique journey to the Yangtze River. As I prepared to leave Guilin, I took long walks along the river, shopped in the city plaza, and relished in a luxurious massage. That evening, I flew to Wuhan. I took these photos from my hotel window in Guilin. I was trying to get a photo of the fighter jets that were flying overhead. It’s funny how our tour guides never told us there was a Chinese air base nearby.
10/24/02… Wuhan… Yangtze River Cruise I had a quick tour of Wuhan on Thursday afternoon. My private guide took me to a museum, pearl shop, and the area of Mao Zedong’s residence. After an early dinner, she escorted me to the dock to board my ship. Surprisingly, my name was not on the ship’s manifest but they let me board anyway. It was an emotional moment as I listened to my guide argue on my behalf in a language I couldn’t understand. I was happy to finally reach my cabin. At the museum in Wuhan, I enjoyed a live concert of Chinese music played on ancient instrument reproductions. The costumes and sounds were phenomenal.
10/25/02… Yangtze River… Yueyang On Friday, the first day of the cruise, we went upstream to Yueyang and Dongting Lake. We went on a shore excursion to the Yueyang Tower, more shopping, and a brief dance performance. This photo is representative of the traditional Chinese architecture at the Yueyang Tower. The riverboats cruise around Dongting Lake and contribute to the air pollution that prevails all the way up the river. These girls from the Miao minority performed a traditional Miao wedding dance in a shop across from Yueyang Tower. The upper level of Yueyang Tower affords a beautiful view of Dongting Lake, known for flooding during the region’s rainy season.
10/26/02… Yangtze River… Three Gorges Dam On Saturday, the cruise took us past ports of call and on to the controversial Three Gorges Dam. I had expectations of touring the dam and passing through its ship locks. Instead, our shore excursion entailed only an observation tower while the ship went through the locks without us and we reboarded upstream. From the upper deck of the Victoria Prince, I saw spectacular scenery and beautiful architecture. I also saw pollution, poverty, and things far worse. The dam site was clouded in air pollution. The locks at the Three Gorges Dam take ships through five chambers and require hours to navigate. For a price, smaller ships may take a ship elevator, bypass the locks, and save time.
10/27/02… Yangtze River By Sunday morning, we had already passed through the Xiling Gorge and the Wu Gorge. I skipped the shore excursion to Fengdu and visited the ship’s doctor instead. He gave me antibiotics, organic cough medicine, and lozenges to treat an upper respiratory infection caused by all the air pollution I had seen. I napped all day and joined the other passengers that evening to enjoy the beautiful river landscapes. The gorges were lovely, though the air pollution made it difficult to photograph them. There were other ships on the river much like ours. I saw livestock being transported down river and ancient bridges along the mountainsides.
10/28/02… Yangtze River Monday was our last full day on the river. I spent a lot of time on the observation decks watching China pass before my eyes. This day above all others shaped my impression of China. The billions in China don’t live in the cities. They live in the rural areas and I was amazed to see them in every mountainside field and road and on every shore. I saw faces… cultivating farms, feeding livestock, or simply staring back at me. As I sat on the observation deck surveying the landscape, I saw ancient Chinese buildings peeking between the trees. There were miles upon miles of orange groves, and every now and then I would see a navigational station and markers indicating the predicted level of the water when they actually flood the three gorges area.
10/29/02… Chongqing… E’Ling Park… Sichuan Province A tour guide met me in the ship’s lobby on Tuesday morning and we disembarked with my luggage. She escorted me to the Hilton Hotel where I stole a couple of hours of solitude before the next guide came to take me for sightseeing. I preferred to stay in the comfort of my room. I was tired of sightseeing and shopping. But I knew the guide would lose “face” if I canceled, and besides, I had paid for this! So I went and was glad that I did. The Chinese man that carried my luggage off of the ship actually tied it to a pole that he carried over his shoulders. I felt really bad because I had a lot of heavy luggage. But he was paid well and would have it no other way. My tour guide took me to E’Ling Park, one of the high points of my 20 days in China. We climbed to the top of this pavilion, the highest point in the city. After lunching at a nearby café on authentic Sichuan food, we visited the Three Gorges Dam museum. The museum featured a huge mural of the Three Gorges Dam and… shopping. This building in E’Ling Park is the site of Mao Zedong’s famous meeting with Chiang Kaishek. I visited E’Ling Park just in time to see the annual flower exhibition. There were chrysanthemums everywhere!
10/30/02… Chongqing to Hong Kong On Wednesday, my guide showed me more of Chongqing and “highly encouraged” me to shop! It’s hard to imagine that I would grow tired of shopping, but it happened. I was relieved to wave goodbye to him at the airport and head to Hong Kong. The chrysanthemums at E’Ling Park were spectacular. General Stillwell’s museum was under construction so I was unable to visit it. I wanted to remember my eccentric tour guide (on the right), and the splendid costumes worn by the bellmen at the Chongqing Hilton Hotel. I really enjoyed using my camera in Chongqing. There were such beautiful shots of architecture in traditional Chinese landscaping.
10/31/02… Hong Kong… San Francisco… DFW… Home! I planned to tour Victoria Peak in Hong Kong on Thursday morning before departing for San Francisco, but my tour guide didn’t show. So I lingered around the hotel, enjoyed the boardwalk, and indulged in a fast haircut before catching the shuttle to the airport. I missed my connecting flight from San Francisco but finally made it to DFW around 11:00 PM, really thankful to be home and that my home is in the U.S. From my window at the New World Renaissance Hotel, I could see the water and the various yachts and boats in the Hong Kong harbor. I wish I had planned a couple of days in Hong Kong because it really looked like fun. Guess I’ll have to do that next time!
My visit to China in 2002 brought new impressions and reinforced some of the impressions from my 1997 visit. Among all of my impressions, one remains constant: the sun is rising on China and she is awakening to a new day of opportunity. We can only hope this new day for China will somehow bring the true religious and political freedoms that her people deserve. …Debbie Wiles