November 20th, 2008
Somehow a bunch of random stuff all came together just before dinner inspiring me to post a few links, at least. Two are hillarious, one is infuriating, one is awe-inspiring, one is moving.
The infuriating one involves a skifield in Yanqing County that we usually pass on the way out to the village. The bastards are wasting Yanqing’s (and therefore Beijing’s) precious and extremely limited water resources again. Just to emphasize how much this infuriates me: Every time we go up to the village during ski season (at least, those times we catch the bus up the G110- sometimes we hire a car and take the back road along the edge of the reservoir) we pass the skifield in question and everytime it’s a stark strip of white running down the mountainside just above the Longqingxia turn-off with dusty yellowgreybrown mountainside stretching along the face of the range for dozens of kilometres east and west, and dried out fields of the same colour forming the basin floor below. Yeah, if we’re passing just after a snowfall- a very rare occurence- there is some white on the surrounding mountainsides, but the contrast between natural mountainside dusted with snow and almost purely artificial skifield is just as stark.
The awe-inspiring makes me glad I wasn’t in Yantai on the 17th. Nothing more needs to be said.
And the moving: There’s a fair bit of text, but the pictures of these pupils in a Yunnan mountain village primary school say more than enough. Nah, I won’t translate, I’ll just let the pictures speak.