Kiwi in China
Eastern Sunrise (Ri Chu Dong Fang) - the rising economic power that is China today but their greatest achievement could also their biggest environmental burden! But no matter where you are in the world, there's always the fascination of the Sun Shower (Taiyang Yu) the quirky meteorological event where the rain falls while the sun is shining. Where there is dark, there is also light. The Terracotta Army (Bingma Yong) is an enormous collection of life-size Chinese warriors made out of hardened clay. One of the more important archaeological finds of the 20th century displayed in the same pit they were uncovered in. A military-like approach to China's development is clearly well-embedded in the ideologies and history of the country. The Harmonious Sounds of Mt Hua (Huashan Zhi Yun), one of five sacred Daoist mountains located in the Shaanxi Province. Huashan has a variety of temples and other religious structures on it's slopes and peaks. A very steep and treacherous climb but exhilarating all the same! Huashan standing tall and proud for me represented both the Chinese stoic vision of virtue and also the spatial and temporal immensity of China itself. The Narrow Streets of Old Beijing (Beijing Hutong) are alleys formed by lines of traditional courtyard residences. The hutongs are residential neighbourhoods which still form the heart of Old Beijing. There's a certain melancholy to the place contrasted with the somewhat and cheerful market places. Hutongs: the old in the new; Beijing, both an ancient and modern city. On May 12th 2008 the Great Sichuan Earthquake struck. Devastation, Loss followed by hope and an eventual return to Life (Hui Mie & Chong Sheng). While traveling I could not help but be affected and moved by the strength and fortitude of the Chinese people during this tragic time of great loss. Great Wall Sunset (Chang Cheng Lou Ri ). The Great wall served as a protection against the Mongols from the north. To embark upon a climb and walk along the Great Wall of China is an experience never to be forgotten. Richard Nixon once said: "This is a Great Wall, and only a great people with a great past could have such a great wall." Another opportunity to later sit back and marvel at China's prehensile capacity to build bloody big things! Speaking of which, The Forbidden City (Zijin Cheng) at the centre of the ancient city of Beijing, was home to 24 emperors during the Ming and Qing dynasties. No-one could enter or leave the palace without the emperor's permission. The forbidden palace, a metaphor for old China, also persists now as a metaphor for 21st century China in the digital age. Anyone who visits China invariably ends up climbing lots of stairs (Tai Jie), and I mean lots of stairs! Often acting as a lure stairs, like life, have their ups and downs. Ascending or descending you are engaged in both a physical struggle while at the same time often pleasantly distracted by the majestic scenes around you! Preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympics (Ao Yun Hui) were near completion... a city transformed! Memories of China (Zhong Gou Ji Yi) such as very affordable and frequently sampled Tsingtao beer was a particularly memorable highlight! The Last of the Thunder and Rain (Zui Hou De Lei Yu), the passing of a storm; the end of a brief but intense journey full of strong passions and emotions that disrupted the soul and threw this man completely off balance! Enjoy!