Sunday, 1 June 2008

Update from Beijing

I am still here. I just lost my voice through censorship. And after and other useful sites could not help me to get back to blogspot I gave up. Of course I was angry and sad. Not only could I not write about my thoughts and little daily adventures, I had no access to all my favorite blogs hosted by blogger, blogspot, typepad etc. But after a while I almost get used to a blog free life...

Every now and then I checked my statistic (via and wondered that I have still lots of hits although I am not updating my blogs.

And just right now, checking again, I see that a lot of hits come via ... - and I followed the link and found this free proxy server that not only allows me to see again my blog - but also to sign in ! THANK YOU THANK YOU !

It feels great! I am back online !

I had so many little daily adventures to tell, that right now I do not know where to start. I see that my last post was May 6, more than three weeks ago (it felt longer to me).

Maybe I should start with what I posted last - about "the virus".
Mmmh.... tricky, I guess, politically not correct to talk about it, I can feel it.
Or why does no newspaper gives any update about it? In the beginning they promised weekly updates. Or was it only monthly? I read somewhere that they do not report statistics anymore (about how many kids have the virus and about how many died - in Beijing) because the blood test with HMFD (hand mouth food disease) is optional, so any reported figure will not give a clear picture. This explanation - I recognize the style - might have been given. So for now, nobody, including me, seems to know anything. Everybody pays attention to the kids hygiene (washing hands as often as possible) and hops that their own kid(s) does not get sick before they leave Beijing for summer holiday or before they move away.

Shortly after the virus subject, a far more dramatic nature disaster happened. The earthquake. I have been in the car on the 3rd ring road on May 12, at 2.28 pm when the earth shaked - even in Beijing. The epicenter was 1545 km away from Beijing, but the quake with magnitude 7.9 (or 8.0) was still to feel in Beijing. Some did not feel it, like me. But many, working on higher floors in Beijing office buildings, or even in schools could feel it and left the buildings or were evacuated respectively. Many people were seen in the streets while others still wondered why, until it was on the 3.00pm news on the radio and was spread my word of mouth and SMS. There were - apparently - thank god - no casualties in Beijing - and no news about what the impact was here in the capital. You get your picture from talking to many different people. Not from reading some newspaper.

I am glad that the Bookworm Beijing organised a donation for Chengdu. They were collecting clothes, blankets, dried food etc. until Saturday May 17, 4.00pm. I was happy to donate kids clothes and our blanket together with my son at the bookworm. It was impressive to see all the big boxes packed so fast by DHL and stored in several yellow vans and trucks - and knowing that the needed goods will arrive in Chengdu the next day to be distributed via the Bookworm Chengdu. I am glad to have been enabled to contribute a little bit, and thanks to the Bookworm, the goods hopefully have arrived at the right moment at the right place.

All other things since the earthquake appear minor and unimportant. That is why the newspaper concentrate on the earthquake, the rescue works, the survivors, the heroes. There seems (almost) no space or time for other news.

Later that month I had an issue with the Bank of China... I was at the ATM machine waiting for my money, that did not come out, but when checking the bank account it showed that 2.500 RMB were debited. It was solved in about 10 days, but with some minor headache as the customer service staff did a very bad job, indeed they did not do their job at all. Anyway, maybe later more. Maybe not.

The air quality last month was not good at all. It seems to get worse. Due to the strong winds all the dust from the many construction sites was blown all over the city (they are sill building like crazy, until there is no more between July 20 and September 20).

And last but not least the news that I have not told yet:
We are moving! June is my last month. In less then 4 weeks (!) from now we are moving. And this is another story.

I am happy to start this month with a new post. And I have many pics to post soon.
Good night from Beijing.


monkey girl said...

I checked in everyday to see if you were back. Knowing what was going on in China, I was waiting to hear your viewpoint, and of course hope you were healthy and safe.
Glad to see you back.

mingsuan said...

Hi Suzie
I checked on you often too - to see if you got through the great firewall. I managed to read you on but could never comment. Glad you are back.

Di Overton said...

I am so pleased to see you back. I have been checking regularly and assumed communications weren't good because of the quake. Relieved you are well and WELCOME BACK

columnist said...

Welcome back!

- Suzie from Beijing - said...

Ni Hao Everybody !

I am so glad to see you care!!
Thank you for your comments!
Even if I cannot read or sign in, I can receive your comments via email.

And now - again - it is bewitched -I cannot sign in.

I am trying to post at least a comment...

I also tried before, but it allows reading only.

I don't understand how this censorship works. Are there thousands of little Internet policemen at work? Are they observing tiny me? Did they see I found a hole and stuffed it?

I also heard that it depends on the compound you are living in. So far my compound was not a problem (very "generous" access to TV stations and internet websites). - But the management has changed. Maybe some other things as well.

* They don't make it easy to like them. *

I will try again later. Until soon hopefully,

Best regards from Beijing
alive and kicking


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