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Showing posts with label Architecture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Architecture. Show all posts

Monday, September 17, 2018

After a Thunderstorm at an Ancient Gate in Ganzhou

Last year I documented the effects from a typhoon directly hitting Zhuhai and Macau. More recently, Typhoon Mangkhut has left a mark in the Philippines and in China, especially the former. Most of the reports about the China region I've seen from Western news organizations focus primarily on Hong Kong despite the center of the storm hitting a point further to the southwest in Guangdong. While not dismissing the newsworthiness of some of what was reported, it struck me as an example of how news from this region can sometimes have a Hong Kong bias similar to the Beijing bias for China as a whole.

Anyway, late this afternoon in Ganzhou, far enough from the sea and the storm, there was a brief strong thunderstorm. The effects I saw were relatively insignificant though.

Yongjin Gate after a thunderstorm in Ganzhou
Yongjin Gate (湧金门)

That's all.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Sun Drying Peppers on a Ancient City Wall

Yesterday's post included a photo of chili peppers being ground up in Ganzhou. The theme now continues with chili peppers sun drying on Ganzhou's ancient city wall.

chili peppers drying on the old city wall in Ganzhou


I didn't try any of them then. But I can't rule out I didn't unknowingly do so later. Had I known, it would have made the experience all the better.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

The Ganzhou Railway Station: A Flying Horse, a Sunset, and a Police-Evading Truck

Yesterday around 6 p.m. I stopped by the Ganzhou Railway Station to take a closer look at it and the surrounding area. Upon arriving I found a location safe for standing with a mostly clear view of the station and a large sculpture of a horse in front. The horse is based on the iconic Flying Horse of Gansu bronze sculpture and a symbol for the China National Tourism Administration (CNTA), which recently merged with the Ministry of Culture to form the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. The plaque on the base of the structure indicates the CNTA identified Ganzhou as a "Top Tourist City of China".

Just before lifting my camera, I heard a loud whistle behind me and turned around. A man driving a truck had turned into an area designated only for buses and a police officer was trying to stop him. The mistake seemed understandable, and I expected the driver would soon change course.

He didn't. Instead, after slowing down and showing clear awareness of the officer, he drove onwards. When the officer went running after the truck, it quickly accelerated. The man then drove into an area partially blocked by a gate.

A number of other police immediately became involved, but most of them didn't continue chasing the truck. They knew something the man possibly did not. There was no other way out. Unsurprisingly, the truck soon returned. Surprisingly to the driver, the police had completely blocked the road. The man chose not to go all Dukes of Hazard, and the police questioned after he had stopped.

This was not a great development for the man. Or me. With all the action now in the scene I had hoped to capture and plenty of police eyes about, I didn't know a) if me taking a photo would attract attention and b) whether the police would then question me. All I really wanted a photo of the statue and station and not create more of an event, so I waited.

The man initially tried to laugh the matter off. The police didn't laugh. They then appeared to ask for ID. Things proceeded rather peacefully after that, but there was no sign of when it would all end. So, I eventually gave up and quickly took two photos.

man driving truck stopped by police at the Ganzhou Railway Station
A China's Core Socialist Values display, the Flying Horse of Gansu, and the Ganzhou Railway station
(oh, and a truck stopped by police)


Fortunately, one turned out decently enough. Also nice, nobody approached me. As I walked away, I noticed they had allowed the man to depart. Especially for a person who had just explicitly ignored police orders and tried to evade them, the issue had been handled rather calmly and efficiently.

The rest of my time at the station passed by far more mundanely. Below are a few more photos I took of and from the station, some including the hard-to-miss horse. Train stations in China can be rather lively places, but at the time the station seemed relatively subdued. But at least the setting sun added some color.


bus parking lot and stop at the Ganzhou Railway Station


front of Ganzhou Railway Station and a McDonald's


view from Ganzhou Railway Station


view of China National Tourism Administration Flying Horse of Gansu sculpture at the Ganzhou Railway Station


China National Tourism Administration Flying Horse of Gansu sculpture at the Ganzhou Railway Station


front of the Ganzhou Railway Station (赣州火车站)

Thursday, July 26, 2018

A Room With Better Views than Internet Connections

Regarding the tale of my problems uploading photos and such, all is much better now. A change of location did the trick. After easily connecting to the internet with a VPN, I tested things out by uploading a photo to Blogger which, like most of Google's services, is blocked in China. All went well. And I haven't had any major problems since.

To celebrate, here are two photos taken from the room in Shenzhen where I experienced much frustration with my internet connection:

view from a room on a high floor in Shenzhen


view from a room on a high floor in Shenzhen


At least I enjoyed the view, even though you could say that some of it was blocked.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Looking Across Victoria Harbour from a High Place

Posting has been intermittent lately, but I plan to return to a more regular schedule soon. For now, here is a view from Hysan Place in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, looking northward across Victoria Harbour:

view from Hysan Place in Hong Kong looking northward across Victoria Harbour


More later . . .

Sunday, June 10, 2018

A View from Below of Three Guangzhou Towers at Night

The previous two posts included photos of the Chao Tai Fook (CTF) Finance Centre, Guangzhou International Finance Center (IFC), and the Canton Tower in Guangzhou. The most recent post referred to some below-ground-level urban planning. So to pull everything together, here is a photo capturing all three of the tall structures taken last night from an open section of the mostly underground Mall of the World.

CTF Finance Centre, IFC, and Canton tower viewed from an outdoor area at the Mall of the World

Thursday, June 7, 2018

A Taller Tower in Guangzhou's Clouds

The previous post, "The Two Towers of Guangzhou", featured a photo of two skyscrapers reaching into the clouds at night. The building on the left is the Guangzhou Chao Tai Fook (CTF) Finance Centre and the building on the right is the Guangzhou International Finance Center (IFC). They are sometimes referred to the East Tower and West Tower, respectively. The CTF Finance Centre is the taller of the two and is currently the third-tallest building in China and seventh-tallest in the world.

But the title for most iconic tower in Guangzhou probably wouldn't be awarded to either of these buildings and instead go to the Canton Tower. It isn't counted as a building, but it is even taller than CTF Finance Centre and is the fourth-tallest freestanding structure in the world.

I took the photo below of the Canton Tower shortly after the previously shared photo from a location just feet away. The scene was especially remarkable to me because the view was unusually clear thanks to genuinely good air quality.

Canton Tower in Guangzhou at night


I would say the big story related to these towers isn't their heights but closer to ground-level, including below it. A story of urban planning for another day . . . 

The Two Towers of Guangzhou

two Guangzhou skyscrapers in the clouds at night

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Eighteen Scenes from Historical Jiefang Road in Yunfu

Many of the buildings which line Jiefang Road as it winds it way through central Yunfu are indicative of some of the city's history. In nearby cities such as Zhongshan and Jiangmen, a few similar historical roads have in part been turned into popular pedestrian streets. Yunfu doesn't appear to have any such grandiose plans at the moment, though the city government has proposed renovations to this "living fossil" (reference in Chinese).

The series of photos below capture scenes beginning on Jiefang East Road, moving westward to Jiefang Middle Road which passes by Martyr's Park, and then onto Jiefang West Road towards the road's end near Pingfeng Hill, which appears in two of the photos. Many of the scenes include buildings with historical architecture. And many capture some of the life at the old street on two recent weekday afternoons.


Jiefang East Road (解放东路)

woman pushing a baby stroller on Jiefang East Road in Yunfu


small vehicles on Jiefang East Road in Yunfu


Jiefang Middle Road (解放中路)

people walking on Jiefang Middle Road in Yunfu


scooters on Jiefang Middle Road in Yunfu


Jiefang Middle Road in Yunfu


building with historical architecture on Jiefang Middle Road in Yunfu


Jiefang Middle Road in Yunfu


Jiefang West Road (解放西路)

man riding motorbike on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


dog and a woman pushing a baby stroller on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


bikes on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


pharmacy on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


man unloading a van on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


Jiefang West Road with Pingfeng Hill in the distance in Yunfu


Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


man looking at his mobile phone while walking on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu


old buildings on Jiefang West Road in Yunfu

Monday, March 26, 2018

Scenes from Two Sections of Baisha Road in Jiangmen

One section of Baisha Road (白沙路) in Jiangmen has a much older feel than other sections. Below are four photos capturing a bit of the life on that stretch this afternoon. For a contrast, the fifth photo captures another section of Baisha Road.

Some people may question whether this is all really Baisha Road. A later post will highlight some of the apparent disagreement on that issue.


section of Baisha Road in Jiangmen with older buildings


section of Baisha Road in Jiangmen with older buildings


school children walking on Baisha Road in Jiangmen


people walking on Baisha Road in Jiangmen


section of Baisha Road in Jiangmen

Monday, December 18, 2017

Elevated Arches in Wuhan

I'm hoping to soon return to posts with a bit more text in them. For now, here is another scene from the capital of Hubei:

Zhongbei Road, including an elevated section with many arches over it, in Wuhan
Zhongbei Road near Han Street

Monday, December 4, 2017

A Time of Change and Digging at the Gude Temple in Wuhan

Even after visiting hundreds of Buddhist temples in China, the Gude Temple in Wuhan can catch you by surprise. According to a photo gallery featuring the temple on the Hubei Provincial People’s Government's website:
It was built in the 3rd year of Emperor Guangxu (1877) in the Qing Dynasty.

The present Great Buddhist Hall was built in 1921 and later was expanded into Gude Temple, which covers an area of 20000 square meters and has a floor space of 3600 square meters.

The Gude Temple was built according to style of the Alantuo Temple in Myanmar in an erratic combination of all thinkable architectural styles and traditions, being unique in construction of Buddhist temples in China’s hinterland.
I wouldn't describe the location as being in China's hinterland, but I agree the architecture is unlike any other temple I have seen in China. My recent visit was made all the more special thanks to work affecting much of the temple's grounds — reminiscent of the construction I walked through when I visited the Changchun Taoist Temple in Wuhan six years ago.

Below are some scenes which feature some of the change now occurring at Gude Temple as visitors still make their way around. The temple is easily reachable by going to Toudao Street Station on the Wuhan Metro and then walking down Gudesi Road. But that might not work in the not-too-distant future. Many of the areas near the temple are changing to a greater degree.


excavator moving a tree at Gudesi Temple



excavator moving a tree at Gudesi Temple



monk and workers at Gudesi Temple in Wuhan



excavator and truck at Gudesi Temple



excavator at Gudesi Temple



excavator at Gude Temple



excavator at Gude Temple



Gude Temple (古德寺) in Wuhan

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Perspective on a Old Tower in Wuhan

Hongshan Pagoda (洪山宝塔) in Wuhan, China


In 1291 somebody climbed many steep, narrow, and irregular stone steps to reach the highest level of the Hongshan Pagoda in Wuhan, China. More than 700 years later somebody else did the same.

But only one of us is still alive today.

*   *   *

Now that I've confirmed my continued existence, at least up until the time I post this, I will add that, yes, I am now in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province. There is an immense backlog of posts I have been wanting to write, but I have been heavily preoccupied with the exploration / collection side of things lately. Also, the amount of change I have seen in Wuhan, Changsha, and elsewhere has left me wanting to digest things more fully.

So on that note, here is a photo of the Hongshan Pagoda taken by Frederick G. Clapp sometime between 1913-1915:

black and white photo of Hongshan Pagoda


And here is a recent view from the tower including the Baotong Temple:

view from the Hongshan Pagoda in Wuhan