Archives For Cities

There is continued good news from China! I know some of you may have heard negative things about China on the news, but there is something happening there that is an improvement. Would you like to know what it is?

The air quality in Beijing is improving at an amazing rate! The photo above was taken in the afternoon during the winter, so the sun was lower in the sky, and you can tell by the lack of leaves it was winter. The sun wasn’t brilliant and clear that day; rather it was dull from all of the air pollution.  Many times I have taken groups to China and our flight would arrive in the afternoon. While walking up the ramp (which had windows on each side) from the plane to the airport terminal, my friends would say, “Oh, it is going to rain today.” As I kind of chuckled to myself, I would explain to them the air in Beijing just looks like that on some days.

When I lived in Beijing several years ago, I lived on about the 20th floor of an apartment building. On some days it was difficult for me to see the telephone poles by the street from my apartment window. So, I am very happy to report that Beijing has done a marvelous job of improving their air quality. 

The photo above shows a building in Beijing. As you can see, now there is a beautiful blue sky!

Some industries have been invited to relocate outside the city, and I think that has had a positive and visible impact on the skies over Beijing. Public transportation is available and encouraged in Beijing, which has also helped control the air pollution. 

If you had considered travel plans to Beijing and were concerned about the air quality, I would encourage you to book your trip! Based on what I have seen, it would be surprising to me if you saw a return to the days of horrible air pollution. Maybe I will see you there!


August 23, 2016 — Leave a comment

Today I want to share with you the wide range of uses of the parks in China. With the population density that cities have in China, it is good to see how so many people use and enjoy the opportunities offered by even the smallest of parks.

My wife and I don’t have any children, so I was very interested by the device this young mother deployed to help her child learn to walk. I can only imagine how many steps it took this child to waddle across the park. It didn’t matter, because they seemed to be enjoying themselves.

walking in the parks

At the other end of the spectrum for uses of a park is practicing martial arts. This group of young men were being coached and they all had an opportunity to show the coach their skills. To say the least, it was interesting to see.

martial arts in the parks

A more peaceful experience in the park would be to fly a kite. There is a city in the Shandong Province named Wei Fang, and it is the kite-flying headquarters for China. I think the people in Wei Fang would be proud of the effort of the people flying these kites in this park. My camera was at full zoom, so you can’t appreciate how high these kites were; but trust me, they were very high!

flying kites in the parks

It is wonderful to see such a wide range of people using the parks. The leadership in the cities usually does a wonderful job of maintaining existing parks and building new parks where they have the space!