Month: October 2014

Plant Delivery

Photographed  in front of some restaurants (including Kentucky Fried Chicken and Pizza Hut branches) across the street from my apartment complex. I took the shot with my iPhone 4, and then spent a fair amount of time developing it with Lightroom (tight cropping, increase of contrast and clarity, decrease of vibrance and saturation, and spot removal).

Looking North

This shot, was taken from a pedestrian over-crossing outside my apartment complex,¬† is looking down Hui Xin Xi JIe as it crosses over the North Fourth Ring Road. On the left in the background are three structures that I’ve previously photographed: the abandoned building, the golden potato, and the smokestack.

On the right, is the entrance to an extremely convenient subway station. A bit farther back is a building under construction.

Proof once again that, although we certainly have our days of bad traffic and horrible air pollution (and even days with both), we still have days like Chong Chong’s grandmother remembers from her youth.

Toilet Delivery and Installation

This contractor had stopped at a street corner near my apartment complex to ask for directions when I snapped the photo.

I really like how low the carbon footprint is for him. I mean, everything on an electric bicycle. In the US, this would be “big truck” work.

Smoke Stack

I’ve gone back to this photo many times in the month and half since I took it. I felt like it’d end-up being black and white from the beginning (even though it was a beautiful blue-sky day). Most of the time was spent on cropping and removing distractions from the shot. Today’s final tweaks were with the grain… there was almost none in the original shot.

Chong Chong at Twelve Months

A bit over a year ago, Shanshan checked into Xie Hu Hospital. After going through admittance, she was assigned to an eight-bed maternity ward.

Well, this being China, the women in that ward (including one that preceded Shanshan) setup a group in wechat, and have been chatting ever since.

They thought it would be nice to do a joint birthday celebration yesterday (which is actually Chong Chong’s birthday), so we got together at the newly constructed Crowne Plaza Beijing Lido hotel.

The festivities included the obligatory eating of cake:

And, even though it is probably politically incorrect in this day and age to do so, I am going to point out the difference in eating styles between the girl on the left and my son on the right, and will unabashedly attribute it to a difference in their genders.

Oh, and after he finished with the cake, Chong Chong decided to continue eating the, well…

After this, the mothers successfully assembled all nine children on chairs.

Later on, seven of nine (sounds familiar in someway) fathers got together with their children for this shot:

Oh, just in case you cannot recognize me, I’m the one on the left.

We also had lunch, which was fantastic. (Kudos again to the staff for their work on accommodating us.)


Now, for those who read my blog (and don’t just look at the pictures), I’ll be happy to answer questions you might have about what it was like having a kid born in a Chinese hospital (which is considered to be one of the best in the nation) as well as the fairly typical middle-class Chinese way that Chong Chong is being raised (Yue Sao for the first months, maternal grandparents living with us for the most part thereafter, etc).

Lidu Garden

Shanshan, Chong Chong, and I walked around the Lidu Garden on Thursday. It is one of many small parks around Beijing.

A note about the lake… it is filled with what appears to be thick algae. I was fortunate in having the reflection mask it.