Around the World China

Tropical Thunderstorms

When I arrived in Haikou a year ago my only experience with a tropical region has been 6 month on Martinique between my studies in physics and the start of my computer science studies. On Martinique the rainy season is about 3 month and the rest of the year there is more or less sunshine.

The September in Haikou last year has been nice even though it was quite warm with around 38°C. In October the Taifun season began and I can tell you that we got drown in our apartment in the fourth floor. The wind pressed the gigantic amount of water which has been carried along with the Taifun directly through the windows into the apartment. This rainy period continued more or less until mid December. The rest of December and January have been dry but unusual cold, specially because there is no heating in the apartment.

In February it started to rain again. First only sometimes and after a while more and more. Since two month now we have temperatures above 30°C and about one thunderstorm every day. The record has been three thunderstorms in a row during one afternoon. When you are outside in such a storm, there is no protection. When you wear a slicker you are wet from your own sweat, otherwise from the rain. The water in the road can easily raise to a torrent of more than 10cm depth. There is no sewer which can take that much water in such a short time even though the city of Haikou is cleaning them all the time. A gaze through the window shows me grey in grey during such a storm and I can hardly see the neighbour building which is only about 30m away.

I never imagined that on a tropical island like Hainan it could be more rainy than in northern Germany where I come from and which I once left because of the “bad weather”. I think life is really funny and we should enjoy this fact much more ! 😉

Around the World China

Nice to live in China

It is very nice to live in China!

The weather during the last days on Hainan was around 34°C so you don’t have to freeze.

The food is not expensive, even though I have no idea about the quality because it seems not to be controlled who puts what on the plants, into the animals or products.

And I don’t have to fear too much disturbance from the internet. Most of the time I am not able to see pages like wordpress or other blogs, I have no access to my twitter account and confusing political statements about human rights like the ones from anmesty international are by courtesy of the chinese government completely taken out of the internet information stream.

In exchange I am living on a beautiful island in the south of China as can be seen on this picture I found:

The question is: Is it as real as the rest of the living in China?

Around the World China

Living on a Construction Site

On Haidian Island in Haikou where I am living they are constructing new buildings all the time. I guess the result will be a complete and modern part of Haikou because the old houses, step by step, have to give place to construction sites.

Unlike in Germany or Europe the chinese companies are not building and decorating a complete building until it is finished but they are building the the structure and normally enter windows and doors and than they are finished for the moment.

When an appartment is sold the new owner has to decorate the appartment, construct walls in the appartment to seperate it into rooms, kitchen and bathroom, lay a floor, make the electricity and so on until the appartment is ready for living.

This proceeding gives the customer the freedom to decorate the appartment exactly as he likes. The disadvantage of this naturally are the living conditions I am living in because as long as there are still undecorated appartments there will be the noise of construction work to finish them.

Here turnes up another habit in China. Unlike people in Europe the workers in China work seven days a week. There is no such thing as free weekend for normal workers. Except for the Spring Festival when the whole China is traveling home for holiday there is the noise of construction around me every day.

I take this as motivation to work nearly every day too 🙂

The good point, specially when you come from Europe, is that you can go shopping every single day in the year and this from the morning to the at least 22:00 and also your favourite restaurant will not have a day off when you choose to eat there which I had often when I thought about having dinner outside on sundays while I was still living in Switzerland 😉

At last I would like to show you an image of the new driving range not far from me with some old barracks still inhabited in the front and the new buildings already in the back.

Around the World China

Haidian Island Beach

On Haidian Island in Haikou we have our own beach which is about 20 min. walk from where I am living. It is not the most beautiful beach on Hainan nor the cleanest but people like to come out to watch the waves, play in the water or search for mussels between the stones on low tide beside the beach.

During Spring Festival the beach was even crowded with people who came out to enjoy the sunshine.

One day suddenly these huge sand vacuum cleaners arrived on the beach and started sucking away the sand.

Since this day it became clear why they built this long contrete wall in the sea because the machines are working nearly night and day sucking away the sand spraying it over the wall into the huge basin they cut from the sea with the wall. Soon this basin will be filled with sand and they can start building more appartment houses on the newly recovered land.