Saturday, November 26

Dinner @ a Mongolian place

My partner took me out for a dinner to a Mongolian restaurant which is one of the most famous here. If YOU would have been here you would understand why it's famous. I must say that it was one of the most exotic restaurants I've been to in China so far...First of all the food was good but there were certain stuff like sheep stomach and other intestines that I could not get down. The meat was great, we probably ate half a lamb.
At some point a "band" came in and started playing and signing strange songs. They even brought a electric piaono for the show. Shortly after the singing began they came and wanted some of us to drink
Too see a videoclip from this thing, click here!Link

Friday, November 25

Manzhouli by day

After finishing everything up I went to kill some time before evening dinner. The hotel has a view of the Manzhouli lake although now it's totally forzen. There was someone sleeping or then just freezing himself/hersolf on it....This mall had some kinda promotion today...Did not do so well, the banner fell on the main road and cause a traffic jam...And when no one from the mall came and do anything about it some people got out of their cars and removed it.
Also found some strange tree houses while walking around. Wonder why the build them here. Lu Du Villa is not really the most amazing villa I've seen...Since this is a boarder town a lot of Russians are passing through on the weekends from shopping from Zabaylkask a city of 10.000 people. My friend here told me that Russian cars can pass the boarder without any problem what so ever. Only trucks need a license to come. Found a local market very similar to Silk street in Beijing or Qipulu in Shanghai. They all talked Russian to me which is don't know at all...People are however surprised here when a white guy speaks Chinese. I would have thought it's normal in a place like this.
Buy buy buy!
Deserted theme park....had a very Silent Hill 3 aura about it...
There are a lot of cool buildings by the road between the Boarder - Airport - Downtown. Some added below.

University of Manzhouli WOW!Restaurant and art center (left one)
Went to the boarder for some inspections as well. Could ALMOST touch Russian land if it wasnt for the double fence.
Twilight Zone

Shanghai - Beijing - Manzhouli

Time to pack, 30 mins, check, GO! Something came up and I had to replan the weekend because at 12 am my plane left from Shanghai (Got to know about this just arond 9am). I found this funny thing at Hongqiao airport toilet. No need to hire a cleaner if the wall can clean for u!
There are no straight flights to Manzhouli so had to fly to Beijing first. They opened the southern airport in Beijing which was only used by the army before. It was one of the crappyest airports I have ever been too. Plus, the roads are minimal and the traffic was so bad I had to get out of the taxi and run a few kilometers so I would not miss the flight. My lungs felt like I just smoked 40 cigarettes after the run. The air is AWFUL! The army airport had all kinds of slogans "Love the army" "Peoples Liberation" Yes, so much liberation specially back in 1989.
               Crappy airport in the middle of nowhere in Beijing
My favorite english word - SPORK, coz It's a Spoon and Fork combined...
Well at least I got in time for the airplane in Beijing and continued to the final destination. Manzhouli was colder than I thought. I would have imagined around -10 degrees but right now in the night is already -25 degrees.
Luckily im staying at a good hotel so it's nice and warm here. They also have free sauna and Jakuzzi so it was very awesome to go and warm oneself there after arriving.
After the sauna I went out for a walk, beautiful city! But it's changed a lot, so many new buildings and so much bigger than in January last time I was here. All in all it took me about 12 hours to arrive from Shanghai to Manzhouli.....3200km!Hate using Windows, suddenly changed the font and can't change back...

            Don't really know what this is suppose to be....The Gamble Devil?
MAXLOVE! Believe it or not, but it's a restaurant...
            This statue is still the same, children happily chained, huh?                        Most texts are in Russian
  GRK - SA - Mvh to Toba if your reading

Tuesday, November 22

Windows @ Jing An

The only cheap drinking chain in Shanghai is called Windows. There are 3 of them. One of them is an open space where you sit outside. So what to do in the winter when it gets cold? Well making a with a huge mattress filled with air! Suddenly while we sat there having a drink talking they raised up this huge thing. Genius....And yes it got a lot warmer after a while!

To Beijing and back by bullet train!

Went to Beijing with Shuo for some days. Took the bullet train for the first time and it worked well. In the summer there was a big train accident so they slowed the speed for them. It took around 5 hours for it to arrive and was a lot less hazzel than taking an airplane. No check-ins or other baggage problems. Nor are there and weight restrictions for the bags.
Train personnel have their morning military training @ the station...
Beijing was really cold compared to Shanghai and the air was just horrible smog/porridge! It's changed a lot here in 1 year. Also, the taxi drivers often refuse to take you and just pass. This didn't use to happen here before. If you ever see a free taxi that is. There's just not enough taxis in this city!

Took a hotel just on the west side if the city, promotion price for only 35 Euros a night and they upgraded my room. Not bad at all. The view from the hotel wasn't that great. Some small shack with great parking skills on the back yard, I wonder how they are ever going to get the cars out...
Seriously 2.0
Sanlitun the best place was packed as usually. And on friday the 11.11.2011 all of Beijng semed to be out in the streets. The 11.11 in China is "Singles Day" because of the one number. This year was special because it was 2011...A lot of one's and the people here really believe in the meaning of numbers.So much more culture here then Shanghai, love the old buildings and areas...

The Drum Tower
The Muslim school for minority Chinese called "Hui Zu"Wanna buy funOral Supplies?Nanluoguxiang - The little art district
Sweet potatoes, goes for less than an euro...BBQ Some old building that says it sells gold (probably a long time ago)

Offline for some time

For the past 2 weeks my VPN has not been working, I haven't been able to get on the blog or any other site that the Chinese government decided to ban a long time ago. For those of you who don't know: Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Bogspot and many other are completely blocked here. Also include all sites with any sexual content.

But anyway, everything here is good but the weather has become pretty cold! Last week it was above 20 but this week close to 10 and this 10 degrees feels a lot colder than in Finland for some reason. It's always colder in China.

Kinda started missing home lately but luckily it's Christmas soon! Flying home on the 14.12 and will arrive in the night. Will be awesome to see all you people!

Been driving around on a scooter over 2 years now and this traffic really reflects on how people are here. No one cares about how others drive and no one watches out. Same goes for living here, no one will care about you if something happens, you have to push yourself to the last drop if you want something and be a mean and ruthless. That's just how it works, survival of the fittest. A good example. Look at this road, taxi stopped t drop of a passanger, the car behind tries to pass it but there is another one on the incoming lane. Neither of them backs off, they wait until the taxi is finished with whatever the driver is doing, a lot of honking and shouts. 2 minutes later the taxi leaves and the jam gets fixed. REALLY!
No wonder everything is a mess here when people don't care at all about others. Same things goes for hospitals, there are pepople who are hired to Que all day, then they sign a paper at the reception to make an appointment (In whomsoever name it was apponinted to). Problem is for the people who cannot afford to hire someone. Police is the same, I had stolen stuff, my friends had stolen stuff but nothing is done. Only if you pay them of can otherwise prove that you are someone important, things will happen. Just great. So don't lose your stuff, and if you lose it, well then it's gone. Also, get a health insurance so you can go to the foreign hospitals and avoid these "pay and que" things.

Tuesday, November 8

There and back

It's so easy to take the bullet train and go to other cities close to Shanghai. Suzhou, Kunshan, Nanjing is less than 1 hour with the +300km/h train and tickets are around 5 euros. Wonder if Finland will ever see the light of these trains...
Went to visit some factories in Suzhou, had to get up real early. Suzhou was so smoggy/misty. Could only see grey grey grey, depressing weather. Easy to start with a 2 euro McBreakfast but the coffee is rather crap. It's amazing how many Finnish companies have started production in China!
Do they actually use these "about-to-sink" vessels...?

Monday, November 7

Champagne Brunch @ Le Royal Meridien

One of the best things with shanghai weekends is Sunday, because on Sunday there are awesome brunches all over the town! And one is above the rest, Royal Meridien Champagne brunch where you can eat and drink as much as you want REAL Champagne!
The have meat of all kind, salad, seafood, cheee, fresh juices of all kinds and cakes with Hägen Daz ice cream...
Oh jeah! Girls come pouring down margaritas or bloody marrys in plastic syringes whenever you feel like having a shot.
What's your next shot?
The price is fair, 500 Rmb each and you get the whole lot. As much of everything you want!

Chocolade fountains anyone? Come forward with your marshmallows