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  • Saturday, January 06, 2007

    Saturday - January 6, 2007 - Happy New Year!

    ***Have not posted to my blog since Christmas Eve! The earthquake off Taiwan's coast on December 26th broke a major under-the-ocean communications cable connecting China to the rest of the world and Internet communications from China have had serious problems ever since. One prediction is that it will be fixed by January 15th; another that it will take much longer. Francia and I have missed our trouble-free Skype calls, but we've been able to keep in touch and talk fairly regularly, but not always with the best of connections. The holidays have also been a busy time for me; I will try to get some posts done about the past couple of weeks. Also, I have a lot of material from the first half of my stay (yes, I've been here three months with three months to go) which I hope to get posted in the coming weeks. My New Year's Resolution is to keep up with my blogging of current activities in 2007, plus catch up on 2006!
    ***Have not seen much of the sun recently. The forecast for today was sun! But it didn't show up! :-(
    ***Left home about 11:30 AM; took the bus across Chengdu to Qintai Road where I wanted to get a few pictures for my Qintai Road post and have a light lunch (noodles or dumplings) at a tea house in Qingyang Temple. When I got to the tea house, I found it under renovation; they were only serving tea at a few tables they had moved out in front of the tea house; so I had tea and reworked my plan for the day. I think the tea house is getting ready to expand their Gongfu Program; maybe they are enclosing the tea house. I decided to see if the Vegetarian Restaurant in Qingyang Temple had an English menu. They did; so I had a large wonderful, delicious lunch of vegetarian beef, broccoli, rice and tea for 22 Yuan (about US $3.00). It was so good I think tomorrow I may try the Vegetarian Restaurant in the Wenshu Monastary; I know they have an English menu. After this huge lunch, I decided later to have supper at home -- yogurt, "strong & bitey" Australian Bega Cheese on black sesame wheat crackers, an apple, unknown nuts (thought I was buying shelled peanuts on the way home) and a Tsingtao beer. Life is tough in Chengdu!
    ***Took the pictures I wanted on Qintai Road; took a few more shots in Qingyang Temple; a few more in a section of Culture Park which I had previously missed; came across a small park along the river called Plum Blossom Garden and imagined how it would be in the spring; spent most of the afternoon in Baihautan Park where lots of folks were spending their Saturday afternoon; then took the bus back home. Hope to blog in more detail about several aspects of my great day!