lunes, 22 de julio de 2013

Marcopolicing

Random notes and photos about my trip to China. Might be interesting.



We arrived at 4:00AM, and hours latter we had breakfast when our digestive systems begged for dinner. Wary to lose a day, we visited the Lama's temple near noon. Implacable sun. Lack of sleep. Buddhist rituals with incense. I think I'm hallucinating because I can't believe this temple wasn't destroyed during the cultural revolution and NAZI BUDDHAS 

Actually, this was in Xi'an next to the great pagoda.
After that, "Transfer in Huixinxijienankou station in the Songjiazhuang direction"; not what one wants to hear when one's boiled brain is barely able to talk.

The next day, The Red Square and The Forbidden City, where we learned that ancient Chinese emperors could have hundreds of concubines. Of course, modern democracies  are superior to hereditary autocratic rule even in this aspect, as Italy's Berlusconi shows.

Ezkurra (aka annoying westerner aka Nixon) in China
Near such tourist-traps, a reminder of why one should never wear something (in cloth or tatoo/skin) in a language/alphabet that is unknown: I saw a Chinese guy wearing a "I'm supreme bitch" t-shirt. Also, the aforementioned topic plus some engrish: Beijing is shortened "BJ", resulting in this:

Quite a desperate way to get a date, if you ask me...
And on the 3rd day there was smog; luckily, we headed for the great wall, but due to Beijing's brobdidnagian proportions that meant I had to deal with grey skies for hours, resulting in a sore throat, irritated eyes & a surprisingly acute pain in the nasal septum.
In the wall my observations allowed me to conduct a little "natural experiment": Where tourist buses parked, there were several thousand Chinese and about a thousand Westerners (the midday sun made the temperature climb past 40ºC); most Chinese stop at the 1st watchtower, and there are none (!) after the 4th. By the last (7th) watchtower, the count of sweat-machines has dwindled to barely a score, evenly divided among Europeans and Americans, most of the latter being African-americans and Asian-americans (but, I repeat, no actual Chinese!). Caucasians are mostly German and, funnily enough, Basques (no Spaniards of our group of 11 made it  past the 5th watchtower). Of course, this "experiment" has very serious methodological flaws and is therefore almost useless, but interesting still.
Ahivalaostia, Patxi, I don't see where this "great" wall name comes from!
The 4th & 5th days we spent in Xi'an, where I felt a sense of déjà vu with the ancient monuments, for I had "built" them when I played "Emperor: Rise of the middle kingdom" in my computer a decade ago.

Terracota warriors: An autocrat unified China 22 centuries ago and all we got is this lousy pottery
The aforementioned Great Pagoda of the NAZI BUDDHISTS
The next two days we spent in Hangzhou, where the weather was unbearably hot and I acquired immunity against an east-asian pathogen, which had the nice effect of making me able to stand the 39ºC at night temperatures by causing me a similarly warm fever.

The last three days we spent in Shanghai!

Reason reified reaching upward and idiot doing whatever
Heavenly human hive and same idiot in more arrogant pose
I love skyscrapers, and these three are between 400 and 625m each. I came
Who cares about housing bubbles if they get you this?
Anyway, I also got the quintessentially esteriotypical Chinese farmer-hat & red book, and made this photo that should have never been made and never ever MSPaint'd
Long live the world embarrasing tourism revolution!