I woke-up early this morning. Went into the home office to check email and such. When I returned to bed, I found that I’d been replaced.
Nudging the cat (and, now the dog, who had also joined us) out of the way, I returned to bed for a while. One of the emails I’d received was from Shanshan’s mother, and it contained some pictures of snow outside. It didn’t quite dawn on me that these were recent pictures. But, when I opened-up the drapes, here’s what I saw:
Shanshan and I decided to catch a taxi over to the Ten Years After Cafe, which is in the Wudaokou area. On the way out of the complex, I took this shot of two of the towers.
Yep, the snow also brought beautiful blue skies and clean air. Not that one would ever hear about clear skies in Beijing from most Western media sources, mind you.
After breakfast, Shanshan went off to meet a friend and go shopping, shopping, shopping. I decided to snap some photographs before heading home. The Wudaokou Subway Station is in the background of this shot.
I walked down a side street and into an older neighborhood, where I shot these five photographs:
Now, right between the san lun che and micro-van in the preceding shot, was this:
I think those are legs from a mannequin, but I’m really not all that certain. And, well, I think they were in the area because of this building, which (again with some uncertainty) seemed to be some sort of solid waste processing center:
The trash behind me, I slipped down another alleyway into a more crowded area:
Many of the photographs I took there were shot at waist-level and whilst I was walking. The 14 mm isn’t nearly as fast as the 85 mm, but it is ideally suited for taking unobtrusive shots in such an environment. Anyway, if you’re wondering about the angle and soft focus of some of the shots, that’s the reason.
If you don’t get the Brazil title for the above shot, I ain’t gonna explain it to you. Sorry.
Once again, f*ck you, David Sedaris!
What I was trying to do was capture some of the feeling of this small neighborhood. Also, if it isn’t clear from my shots, I really appreciate such places, and feel extremely comfortable walking around in them.
Once I exited the village, I passed by this police substation:
I then came across a san lun che having an inner tube replaced.
Before coming across this small sidewalk restaurant, where another cook was peeling noodles off of a loaf of dough into boiling water.
As a side note, I would definitely eat there. My wife, however, (perhaps just as definitely) would not.
There was a brick construction wall in front of this area, so I held the camera up over it, and took this picture.
When I first came to Beijing, my co-workers took me to an excellent hot-pot restaurant. Unfortunately, it has been closed and bricked-up for a couple of years:
btw, graffiti of this type is still very uncommon in Beijing.
It was still Saint Patrick’s Day in the US when I was walking around, so I figured I might as well take this shot:
As I waited for the 656 to take me back home, I saw a young girl who seemed absolutely giddy over her mother. There was just something so heartwarming about it, that I just had to take a shot.
The bus took awhile to come, so… more proof of the wonderful sky today:
And, perhaps because there was a large span between buses arriving, the 656 was quite crowded when I boarded it.
Upon exiting in my neighborhood, I was treated to this advertisement for Disney’s John Carter. Let’s just say I won’t be going to the neighborhood Megabox to see it.
Here’s another view of the towers as I walked home:
One way to make sure that your chairs don’t disappear.
Finally, before heading into the complex, I took this picture of a propaganda poster.
I’ve been told that I’m probably more aware of it than most Chinese, who I think tend to ignore it. (This, btw, is in stark contrast to the folks I spoke to in Pyongyang when I traveled there in 2009… they were very aware of such, umh, communication.)