Suzhou, City of Gardens and Channels

A very beautiful city in China is Suzhou. You can find it about 80km west of Shanghai. Even if it is not so easy to find it on a normal european map it has about 6.7 million residents together with its suburbs. Suzhou is surrounded by lakes and channels and the city is famous for its parks and gardens.

If you are brave enough you should  travel around in Suzhou by bus. I can promise that it is worth giving a try 😉 Even though the busses might be very full sometimes the people are always very polite and patient. When the bus starts please make sure you have stable hold! Even in China I have never before seen bus drivers driving as if they take part in the Paris-Dakar Ralley but in Suzhou you find them 😀

When I came to China the first time I was still living in Switzerland. With this background it was quite amazing to see the chinese traffic. There is only one word which could describe it: Free Style! It took me some time to recognize that the freestyle driving didn’t seem to result in many more accidents because I could hardly see any damaged or scratched cars driving around. It seems to work if everybody is driving with the same idea of traffic in his mind. But until now I could not find statistics which could confirm my feelings.

There are two things you should do when you visit Suzhou. First of all visit some of the beautiful gardens.

And if you have some time left make a boat tour on the channels which surround the old city center.

A walk in on of the older quarters of Suzhou is very nice too.

When you are lucky you can see a Chinese Opera in the street for free. If you have a good stomach buy a snack from the dealers which are probably around and have a relaxed opera evening.

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One Child Policy

China is a big country with more than 1.3 Billion people.

The rate in which the population used to be growing according to chairman Mao’s policy that every family should have as many children as possible for the chinese revolution turned out to be quiet problematic.

To counter the uncontrollable increase of the population Deng Xiaoping and the Chinese Kommunist Party established the One-Child Policy in 1979 which is still effective and seems to control the population growth quite well.

But to live with this policy is not always easy for the people. China is a country with very family oriented people where the family has a strong social responsibility. If someone has no job or is retired he is supported by his family because the social system in China can only be described as basic up to the time of this writing.

When two people get married in China, traditionally it is said that one family looses a daughter and the other family wins one because the wife belongs to the family of her husband now. This is one reason why most chinese families love to have sons. The establishment of the One-Child-Policy amplified abortions in families who got the news that they will get a girl.

This was such a bad practice that nowadays doctors are not allowed any more to tell the becoming parents the sex of their offspring in advance.

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Empty streets in China

Once a friend who had a look at my China pictures asked me how much time I have spent to erase all the crowds from my images using Photoshop. 🙂 Actually when you grow up in Europe you always think China must be crowded beyond belief because the chinese population is somewhat around 1.3 billion people. But since I traveled through China and live here I cannot understand this idea any more.

You can find places which are crowded and there are times when all the people seem to be on the street at the same time but this is not different than in Europe. If here its crowded around the chinese Spring Festival it is about the same as if you try to go shopping in Europe on a saturday before christmas.

I have assembled some street impressions from my photos:

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Virginia

One of my passions are boats. In the past I had several boats by myself and hope I can buy one again in the future.

Even though I am more attached to motorboats one of my all-time favourite boats is a schooner, the Virginia:

More infos about the rebuild of this beautiful classic can be found at www.tricoastal.com

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RSS Feed is working now

I got my RSS feed working now. In the future you will be able to stay informed about my writing when you register to my RSS Feed.

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Winter Fun in Switzerland

Last winter in Switzerland I have seen something completely new to me. I knew that the people in Switzerland are really ski crazy. Sometimes I had the impression that swiss children learn driving their ski the same time they learn running. And I know the swiss as good horse riders as well. But this was the first time I have seen a combination of both disciplines 🙂

And another one:

When you have that much snow in winter why not have fun with it 😉

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My actual motorbike

One of my passions is driving motorbikes. This began with about 12 when I rocketed the small motobike of my uncle from the court of my grandparents house straight over the empty street into a meadow 😀

Since these days I made many many kilometers on motorbikes. The following image show my “Swiss Express” 😉 I made about 10.000km per years within Switzerland only by hunting from one mountain pass to the next one.

Unfortunately in november 2006 I made an unforced error and trashed my “Swiss Express” because I tried to figure out personal problems while driving motorbike which I should have kept striktly separated. Luckily only me and my bike were hurt.

In 2007 I had the opportunity to exchange my poor “Swiss Express” with my “Golden Dragon”

A real change of generations!

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Winter in Hainan

Hainan is the southmost province of China and lies at the same height as Vietnam. A tropical region you could say an no one built heatings into houses and appartments.

Last winter was my first to live in Haikou and I can tell you that never in my life I had it this cold before.

First of all naturally I was not really prepared for a “winter” on an tropical island. All my wintercloths are still in Europe. We had temperatures around 6°-8°C. Now you may think “hey what is this guy complaining about?” but please take into account that the outer temperature equals more or less to the temperature in my appartment! The cold really creeps into your body step by step … some days I spent more or less in my bed, the only warm place 😉

This was before the chinese Spring Festival a month ago.

During the last day we had 34°C. A real change from winter to sommer within 4 week.

Haikou beach in Winter

Haikou beach in Winter

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RSS Feed not working

The RSS Feed is still not working, sorry.

I will post when I got it finally working as intended.

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Hello world!

Welcome to Dyrathror!

What do you do if you have some time of the day left and are not addicted to TV … start writing a blog 🙂

I will write about where I am and what happens around me, my view of this world and naturally about my passions – programming, photography, music, motorbikes, boats, …

Comments are highly welcome, spam will be erased. Therefore I will approve all comments before publishing and hope you understand this measure.

D.

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