Archive for Januar, 2008

No, we are not covered with snow in Beijing…

Mittwoch, Januar 30th, 2008

Really, what are they showing on international TV??? It must be a catastrophe! And do they really say that it is happening in Beijing???

But there is no snow in Beijing. Really. Nothing. Not even a trace. Zero snow.

Today on my way to office I passed by the famous Forbidden City. I did not have my camera with me, just my mobile phone, but as the weather was so beautiful (it has been like this for 1 week) I still stopped to take pictures. Here is a picture of the north-east tower of the Forbidden City.

Forbidden City of China

Does that look like we have a snow disaster in Beijing? Does that look like it will continue to snow and we are cut off from the rest of the world without telephone or internet or any kind of transportation? If you are not yet convinced then have a look at this picture of the Beihai Park with the white Buddha Temple

Beihai Park in Peking

China is a big country. Really. If the news say there is some snow chaos that does not mean in whole China. I heard that something is going on in 6 provinces. And I am sure Beijing is not one of them.

I might not be able to post anything on this blog for the next two weeks as I will be going on New Years holiday 🙂 Therefore I will not even notice if it actually does start to snow in Beijing in the next 2 weeks…

Winter Swimming

Sonntag, Januar 27th, 2008

Yesterday was again beautiful weather even though there was not much wind. We went to the Houhai lake again for some ice skating. The section for swimmers was slightly frozen so the swimmers had to first get all the ice out of the water. Here you see one of the guys with Beijing’s Drum and Bell Tower in the background.

Getting the ice out of the water

After the 1 hour the cleaning of the water was almost finished. Finally his friend started swimming. Good that he was wearing his swimming cap so that his hair does not dirty the water…

Winter Swimming

I have been doing some dragon boat racing on this lake in the summer time.  Each time I need to shower afterwards to get the itchy feeling off my skin from the water that splashed on me. I just find it amazing that Chinese people swim in this lake – winter and summer.

Fixed Gear Art Exhibition Berlin & Los Angeles

Freitag, Januar 25th, 2008

Fixie Art Exhibition Berlin & Los Angeles

There is an art exhibit all around fixed gear bikes. They will display bikes and spokes cards as well as photography. It will start on February 1st in Berlin and on February 2nd in Los Angeles. Also three of my photographs of my single speed bike will be displayed. Drop by if you are near Berlin or Los Angeles.

Vernissage in Berlin and Los Angeles - Photography and Exhibit of Single Speed Bikes

Construction in Beijing

Freitag, Januar 25th, 2008

The wind is great! When wind comes into Beijing it just blows away the pollution. Yes, it feels slightly more chilly than it is, but I love these blue skies like yesterday:

Highest Building of Beijing

The World Trade Tower 3 is almost finished. It is (and will be for a while) the tallest building of Beijing. I should have taken more pictures of it during the whole construction phase. It was really fast. Not like other buldings which hardly got anywhere in the past year. Not even the Tower of Jiianwai SOHO is completely finished yet. And I am not sure if all of the ugly unfinished buildings will actually be completed before the Olympics…

Slow construction of ugly buildings

Hindi Holiday

Mittwoch, Januar 23rd, 2008

THAIPUSAM is an annual Hindu festival which draws the largest gathering in multi-racial Malaysia. In Kuala Lumpur, the festival is celebrated on a mammoth scale at the Batu Caves temple on the outskirts of the city. This year it falls on Januray 23rd.

Thaipusam falls on a full moon day in the auspicious 10th Tamil month of Thai when the constellation of Pusam, the star of well-being, rises over the eastern horizon. It commemorates the day Lord Siva’s consort, the powerful goddess Parvathi, gives her son, Murugan, the vel (lance) to vanquish three demons and their large army which were plaguing the world.

Snow in Beijing

Montag, Januar 21st, 2008

Yeah! It was all white outside when I woke up in the morning! This is not very usual. I heard that there had been some small snowfall last week when I was not in Beijing. But today was the first time I saw snow in Beijing this winter! Unfortunately that little amount of snow was gone quite soon. Not just because it is not very cold, but also because Beijing is very dry. We usually get west winds that come from Europe. All the moisture is gone by the time the wind passes the Ural mountain chain. After that there is the desert of Gobi and then Beijing. So it was nice to see a white Beijing today.

Snow in Beijing China

Ice Skating on Houhai

Sonntag, Januar 20th, 2008

Finally 🙂 It is cold enough to skate on some of the lakes in Beijing. We had to wait till mid January for that to happen this winter. That was too long…
Many people in Beijing felt the same so both yesterday and today the Houhai lake was overcrowded. And that despite the fact that they this year charge an entry ticket to step onto the lake. The official reason is because the ice is not so thick yet so they have to control the amount of people on the ice. My person impression is that the people working in the ice sport industry (like the ones that rent the ice skates or the ice chairs or the ice bikes) have not had any income this winter so they now need to make up for it.

Anyway it was a great feeling to finally ice skate again. Here two pictures of how my fellow Beijingers enjoyed their day on the ice:

Ice Skating in Beijing

Isn’t it romantic? And the wonderful polluted air of Beijing…

Ice Lovers of Beijing

Statue of Liberty in Tokyo

Mittwoch, Januar 16th, 2008

I didn’t know that Tokyo also has a Statue of Liberty.

In the background you can see the Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Tower.
Statue of Liberty

Monday in Roppongi Tokyo

Dienstag, Januar 15th, 2008

Tokyo has a big scene of track bike riders riding on the streets. When I arrived I saw one guy, but I was on a bus so I could not stop and talk to him. Well even if I had not been on the bus the probability that he would have been able to understand what I said might not have been that high. Yes, that is because I do not speak any Japanese. That makes things harder here.

After I came out of a nice basement restaurant near Roppongi on the lamp post right in front of my was this nice Bianchi Pista fixed gear bike. I do not really like the color (this is the standard Bianchi Pista color), but I would rather own that then none. Well, I would not add that brake on the front tire…

But I still have no track bike yet. I have been searching for the right solution for many months already…

Bianchi Pista Track Bike

Maybe I should not have drunken so many cook-tails with weird names…

Roppongi Tokyo

Second Time Outdoor Climbing in 2008

Montag, Januar 14th, 2008

This winter has been so warm. There was no ice on the lakes in all of December and also the first 10 days of January were really warm. On January 6th we went rock climbing outdoors in Ritan Park. That was the earliest in the year that we have ever done that.

It was so great that we decided to go out into the park for the second time in 2008 this past weekend.

The sun was shining again, but unfortunately the temperature was really different compared to the week before. But we were 2 guys and 3 girls and it was fun to be outdoors.


For sure we had the right clothing. We were able to climb even though our fingers were frozen by the time we reached the top. We actually climbed quite often (well, that was the only way to get the body temperature up).

We thought we were tough till we saw this guy do gymnastics. He was wearing light shoes, socks and short pants. Nothing else. The temperature was about -7 degree celsius…

Gymnastics in Ritan Park Beijing

…at least there will be ice soon.