Sunday, September 24, 2006

Wuhan Visted

Yesterday we finished our work in Wuhan, and so today we had an off day to go touring this vast city. The city is divided into three towns, Wuchang (phonetically "wu-chahn"), Hankou ("hahn-ko"), and Hanyang ("hahn-yahn"). The different parts are separated by the Yangtze and Hanjiang rivers. The brewery is in the Hanyang section, but we spent most of today in the biggest part, by far, Wuchang. We visited the East Lake, which takes up about 1/4 of Wuchang, and the Yellow Crane Tower. This picture is of the Chu Gate at East Lake park.

Besides seeing sights, we also got to ride the lake in a motor boat, and, after climbing about 20 flights of stairs to the top of a hill to the Chu Tower, no small feat, we got to ride little one-man wheeled sleds down a chute to the bottom. It was pretty fun! The chute was like a bobsled run, and you have a brake handle between your legs to pull in case you get going too fast. I did use it a couple times, but I think you could take the whole thing w/out using the brake. It's probobly not something you could do in America, due to liability concerns.

Yellow Crane Tower is one of China's most famous towers. The story goes that a man had a hotel that got no business until a man with a yellow crane showed up. The crane could do all sorts of tricks, and the hotel became a hit. When the man flew off on the crane a couple years later, the owner decided to build the tower in memorial. It's been rebuilt several times, each time getting bigger and more complex. It started out as only two stories, but has always been considered very tall in its time. It's actually a whole compound of grand, ancient buildings, which has been frequented by famous poets and artists throughout its history, who have been inspired by it.

In China, the official language is Mandarin (Pu-tong-wha), but every city has its own locution. I've learned a little bit of Wuhanese while I've been here. Specifically, "Shin-YAO-shee(uh)" means something like "get out of town!" or "that's crazy!" The people here have all been very friendly to us, and the food is amazing. Wuhan food is very spicy. Today I got to try a local treat which is spicy smoked duck neck. It's actually very tasty. All of the food here has been great, if you can take the heat. I'm becoming pretty handy with chopsticks. Last night I was able to pick out a glazed, hard-boiled egg yolk from a bowl. It took me a few seconds, but I did it without too much trouble. I was commended for the challenge, which is apparently not easy even for natives.

Tomorrow we finish up work in Wuhan, and then head back to Shanghai for a week. Back to the ultra-modern cosmopolis. Wuhan was awesome.

6 comments:

martin's girl said...

Just have fun babydoll!

Jonesy said...

Nice pictures. How bout a few shots of the local cuisine?

Digitizdat said...

I wanted to take a picture of the in-flight meal from Wuhan to Shanghai. Definately a strange mix. There was a bag of squid jerky called "Squidslice", but actually there was a little space between the s and the l, so it was "Squids lice". There was also a package of wasabi peas, some California raisins, and a package of Unick brand mentholated cough drops. There was also a cake-like brownie and a dinner roll with a sweet filling. I tried everything but the cough drops.

Kate said...

Hi, how is everything going on with you guys? I hope your first visit to China is perfect!

Keep Moving said...

Hey, nice to see your blog, and I am trying to post more in English now.
www.jarodlee.com

Jonesy said...

Unick brand cough drops?

That got me thinking. What does a doctor grab when he asks a Eunuch to cough?

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