As I flew into Beijing last week, I wondered if I might be able to see the Great Wall of China on my approach. Perhaps you already know that the little “trivia” note about the Wall being visible from space is total tripe. (Unless you are making use of a spy satellite or other such optics). In fact, at a certain altitude, just above the small mountains outside Beijing, even the dirt roads winding around the peaks and valleys make one wonder if these are in fact the wall. But to my surprise, when the Wall became visible, it still wasn’t much different from the roads but unmistakable in its meandering course and the shadow it cast in the afternoon.
The air is improved, I’m told, but within hours my head ached and sinuses were on high alert. I can’t imagine what it was like in January when it was so bad that it was news. I’ve been coming here a few years now, usually for some appointments and then some personal travel time. My personal interest has been waning, while the business interest is a full moon on the rise. Nuts.
Besides the last post about dumplings in Shanghai, I’ve got a couple more coming this week about Rage in China and Panhandling (me!) in Beijing, and perhaps a never-posted look at the businessman’s drinking culture. There’s a slowly growing craft beer scene in China, most notable is the Boxing Cat Brewery in Shanghai (post is over at Pilsgrimage.com)
Once I get those up, be prepared to hear me gush about Taiwan and why I love it!