Sunday, November 12, 2017

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Still There in Changsha: Yanjiatang Lane

Yanjiatang Lane in Changsha (晏家塘巷)

Shortly after I took the above photo, a man approached me and asked what I was photographing. I answered, "This road!"

Feeling he might still have concerns about my intentions, I added "It feels comfortable."

He smiled, and that was that.

Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) was one of the areas that I wouldn't have been surprised to have found greatly transformed during this most recent return to Changsha, but most seemed basically the same as I remembered. However, there were signs, specifically the red circled "征" character I have seen previously in other soon-to-be-demolished neighborhoods in Changsha, that this will be the last time I see the lane as I did today.

"征" character on a building at Yanjiatang Lane in Changsha (晏家塘巷)

Another time, I will share scenes from the street with the same name from which this lane directly extends and other nearby streets where the demolishing is already far more advanced. For today, below are some more scenes from comfortable Yanjiatang Lane.

Yanjiatang Lane in Changsha (晏家塘巷)

Yanjiatang Lane in Changsha (晏家塘巷)

items for sale alongside Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

Van stopped on Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

man using his mobile phone while sitting on motor scooter at Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

flowers (at least some artificial) for sale at Yanjiatang Lane (晏家塘巷) in Changsha

Monday, November 6, 2017

Friday, November 3, 2017

Looking Down at an Intersection Near the Changsha Railway Station

Today I spent some time observing street traffic in Changsha. So instead of anything Halloween-related below are some photos taken from a pedestrian bridge spanning an intersection just north of the Changsha Railway Station.

vehicles on Chezhan North Road (车站北路) in Changsha
Chezhan North Road (车站北路)

vehicles on Bayi Road (八一路) in Changsha
Bayi Road (八一路)

Facing Chezhan North Road
Facing Chezhan North Road

Vehicles entering Yuanda 1st Road (远大一路)
Vehicles entering Yuanda 1st Road (远大一路), most from Chezhan Middle Road (车站中路)

Vehicles and a pedestrian headed toward Yuanda 1st Road
Vehicles and a pedestrian headed toward Yuanda 1st Road

In addition to roads, I also observed some of the traffic on sidewalks.

Along Chezhan Middle Road.

That's all the traffic here for today.*

*Hmm, this could be an unintended pun.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Another View of the Juzizhou Bridge in Changsha

A followup to yesterday's Halloween-themed post is taking longer than expected and won't be finished today. So I will do a different (and simpler) followup.

Recently I shared photos of Changsha's Juzizhou Bridge viewed from the east side of the Xiang River north of the bridge as the sun lowered in the sky. For a variation, here is a photo taken from the west side of the Xiang River south of the bridge as the sun was close to going behind Yuelu Mountain, which is out of view.

two men fishing and the Juzizhou Bridge in Changsha

Of note are the two men fishing on the left side of the photo, the numerous buses on the bridge, and the taller buildings on the right side, three of which stand out more flashily in a photo I took at night four years ago from the same side of the river north of the bridge. Similar to the previous photo, the trees in the far distance are all on Tangerine Island in the middle of the river. The scene is less orangish than the previous photo probably due to facing away from the sun and a clearer sky, though the air quality was still bad — hovering around the border between the Unhealthy and Very Unhealthy categories for just a 24-hour exposure. The full size of the uploaded photo is slightly larger than usual and should be viewable by clicking (or whatever it is you do) on the photo above.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Halloween Night in Changsha, China

Five years ago I shared photos from Changsha, Hunan, indicating Halloween's growing popularity in China, and two years ago I shared a similar set of photos from Shaoguan in Guangdong province.

This year I was in Changsha yet again for the holiday. Later I will post more about the business/marketing side of Halloween. But first, below are some Halloween night photos from an area covering Hualongchi to Taiping Street which has several pedestrian streets and many shopping centers, restaurants, and bars. The photos range from children in costumes to people selling Halloween-related items to a dance club's spruced-up entrance. The last photo reflects that most people who were out weren't dressed up for Halloween. It didn't necessarily stop them from having a good time though.

two young women dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

two young men dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

two children dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

woman selling Halloween-related items in Changsha

young woman dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

young man dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

two young women dressed up for Halloween buying corn in Changsha

Halloween-themed entrance to the Muse dance club in Changsha

young woman dressed up for Halloween in Changsha

three children wearing Halloween masks in Changsha

disposed Halloween mask in Changsha

young men enjoying a late night meal outside in Changsha

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Two More Drained Lakes in Hengyang, Hunan

Within walking distance of the drained lake in Hengyang which once had several sunken pedal boats (and may again in the near future) are two other lakes, both artificial, which were also missing much of their water when I recently passed by.

One day at Yueping Park, workers weren't hard to spot at partially-drained Yunshui Lake.

workers at the bottom of partially-drained Yunshui Lake (云水湖) in Yueping Park (岳屏公园) in Hengyang

I also saw Lotus Lake at Lianhu Square had been drained.

drained lake at Lianhu Square (莲湖广场) in Hengyang

Once again, people were at work.

man walking in drained lake at Lianhu Square (莲湖广场) in Hengyang

workers in drained lake at Lianhu Square (莲湖广场) in Hengyang

And there was even a stranded pedal boat.

pedal boat in drained lake at Lianhu Square (莲湖广场) in Hengyang

I don't know the boat's condition before the lake was drained, but its location is curious.

Together, the three lakes represent some of the infrastructure work ongoing in Hengyang. More of that work, but not involving any lakes, later . . .

Monday, October 30, 2017

Pedal Boats in Hengyang No Longer Sunken, At Least for Now

On my way from Zhongshan in Guangdong province to Changsha in Hunan province, I recently spent over a week in Hengyang, also in Hunan province. This marked my fifth visit to a city which has been featured in many earlier posts here. A subject for a few of those posts has been what has or hasn't changed there during my visits which now cover a period of more than five years.

In May 2014 I noticed some sunken character/animal-themed pedal boats at a pond in (or next to) the Hengyang Youth Palace (衡阳市青少年宫). In April 2015 all of the boats were in the same condition but now surrounded by many dead fish.

When I returned in April of this year, the boats still remained in their resting places though there were no signs of dead fish.

sunken character-themed pedal boats in a pond in Hengyang

So when I returned this month, it was remarkable that the the boats were no longer partially submerged in water — quite a change. But that was only because there was no water.

character-themed pedal boats sitting in a drained pond in Hengyang

Some construction work was ongoing in another portion of the pond. Based on what I have seen elsewhere in China and the fact that some other lakes and ponds nearby in Hengyang were similarly drained at the same time, I presume this is a temporary state and the pond will be refilled at some point.

What I am far less sure about is whether or not the boats will be removed before then.

It gives me yet another reason to hope I can return to Hengyang again someday.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Juzizhou Bridge: A Return to Changsha, Hunan

As recent posts suggest, I am now in Changsha, the capital of Hunan province. I arrived here while the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China was underway. Coincidentally, I was also in Changsha five years ago during the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China. At that time I experienced great difficulty using my VPN to get through the Great Firewall and access online sites blocked in China. This time I have had a far more online positive experience. I have not had any additional unusual problems since those I experienced almost three weeks ago in Zhongshan, Guangdong.

When I mentioned some of the internet challenges I faced five years ago, I shared a photo of Changsha's Juzizhou Bridge. A year later, I shared another photo of the bridge, this one from the western side of the river at night. Although a subway line below the river now matches its path, the bridge remains an important link across the Xiang River while also connecting Tangerine Island (Juzi Zhou) to both sides. Below is a fresh series of eight photos taken north of the bridge from the eastern side of the river. The colors may seem a bit off, but they are in part a result of something that hasn't changed much in Changsha since I first visited the city over 8 years ago — heavy air pollution. All of the photos include Tangerine Island, which blocks the view of the shoreline on the river's other side where the most easily visible buildings stand. In addition to people on and below the bridge, vehicles crossing the river, and ships passing by, the sun descends from one photo to the next, eventually to be partially hidden by Yuelu Mountain.

two people under Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

ship and Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

buses and people on Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

two boats approaching Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

ship approaching Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

man under Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

buses crossing Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha

sun setting behind Juzizhou Bridge (橘子洲大桥) in Changsha