• ChinaBooks.ch
  • Sunday, October 15, 2006

    My Home in Chengdu

    My home in Chengdu for the next six months is in Zongfu Garden - an apartment on the twenty-first floor of #5 Tian Xian Qiao Bei Lu, one block from the Fuhe River. The picture, taken from the banks of the Fehu River looking west, shows my building standing tall. It is a thirty floor building, so count down nine floors and I'm in one of the center apartments with a balcony looking to the east.

    The apartment has a sitting room, bedroom, study, kitchen, bathroom with shower, and a balcony. The sitting room has a cushioned bamboo love seat and two chairs, a coffee table, a table with two chairs for dining, a TV with cable and a DVD player, and a cabinet at the door for house slippers and for guests' shoes. Near the kitchen is a small refrigerator/freezer and a water cooler/heater with filter. The kitchen is equipped with a double sink, a two burner gas cook top, microwave oven, washer for laundry, and cabinets. The bedroom has a large bed, two bedside stands, large closet that includes drawers for my clothes, and a rack on which to dry clothes. The study includes another closet, book shelves and drawers, a desk and a cushioned rocking chair with foot rest. Hot water is provided by a gas-fired mechanism that heats the water instantly when needed in the kitchen, lavatory or shower -- it works very well. The water cooler/heater with filter in the living room works well also. I put water into the container on top and it filters down into a lower compartment. If I turn on the heater and/or cooler it provides either hot or cold water filtered to drink. The hot water is hot enough to make coffee.

    Each room is also equipped with a unit on the wall which cools, heats and/or dries the air. I have not had to use them yet. The weather has been warm, around 80 F during the day and 65 F at night; apparently a little warmer than usual for this time of year.

    The apartment building has a first floor lobby with security at the entrance; there is always someone of duty. Behind the building (away from the street) is a garden which includes a swimming pool for use in the summer. Each floor has 10 apartments - five on the west and five on the east. There are three elevators and after a few uses I figured out that the one on the right only stops at odd numbered floors, the one in the middle stops at all floors, and the one on the left only stops at even numbered floors. Obviously, I've had to walk down a flight several times to figure this out! I guess I should have known by the numbers on the floor keys in the elevator. :-)

    Our mail boxes are on the first floor. I should soon see how China Post works as my nephew Andrew who is teaching English in Japan is very kindly sending me a set of the books they use in the school in which he works. Andrew has been most helpful is suggesting ESL Internet resources and ideas for the classroom. The ESL links on my blog are mostly his suggestions. Thanks, Andrew!

    Under the building is a "bike garage" with security where my bike is waiting for me to ride it. I'm not sure that Chengdu biking is for me; it looks much more dangerous than my empty roads at Hemlock Farms. Time will tell.

    As you can see, the accommodations are very comfortable. They are also convenient to the Chengdu YMCA which is about a 15-20 minute walk to the west. I've located both on Google Earth, but can't figure out how to add a Google Earth Placemark (tm) to my blog. Does anyone know how?


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